Dead Canadian's mountain bike found in Bolivia
LA PAZ - Police raiding an apartment in Bolivia's capital found a mountain bike that may have belonged to a Canadian tourist found dead earlier this year, along with backpacks, passport and credits cards apparently stolen from tourists, authorities said.
Simon Matthew Boily, 23, of Alma, Que., set out Jan. 21 to cycle down a treacherous mountain highway through the Andean foothills near La Paz. His body -- but not his expensive mountain bike -- was found a month later in a ravine near the road about 25 kilometres from the city.
On Monday, Bolivian police executing a search warrant on a pair of suspected criminals' La Paz apartment found a bike similar to Boily's stashed along with an assortment of items apparently stolen from tourists. They also found marijuana and a .38-calibre pistol.
"We suspect that (the bicycle) could belong to the Canadian tourist who died six months ago, also in a robbery,'' government prosecutor Alain Canedo said.
Police had been initially unsure whether Boily's death was accidental or the result of foul play.
Further investigation is still needed, however, before the bike can be definitively tied to Boily, officials said.
The apartment's residents, whom police believe to be Peruvian, had fled before authorities arrived.
Boily had planned to travel to the popular tourist town Coroico, about 50 kilometres northwest of La Paz, where he may have been seeking volunteer work, Canadian officials said.
The La Paz-Coroico highway, known as the "Highway of Death'' for its hairpin turns and precipitous dropoffs, has become a favourite with foreign cyclists though traffic wrecks along it have claimed hundreds of lives over the years.