A cyclist from Dundee who lost contact with his family while travelling through France may have eaten lethal mushrooms.
Steven Harper was attempting to pedal from Dundee to India when he lost contact with loved ones on November 23 near Monaco.
The 38-year-old was robbed of his bike and passport in the South of France, and his last message to family told how he had boiled and ate potentially “lethal” mushrooms he found while foraging for food.
His brother Dale, who flew to Nice in order to lead the search and now plans to fly to Italy, said it has been an “upsetting” Christmas for Mr Harper’s children and family.
He told STV News: “His last message said he had ingested a potentially lethal mushroom while foraging for food and we have not heard from him since.
“The French police have tracked his last GPS coordinates according to his mobile phone but no further news updates there yet. Italian police have been checking hospitals but he hasn’t been found yet.
“I’ll be back in Italy as soon as possible to follow up on a few other leads.
“One thing that hasn’t been talked about yet is Steven is a father to Blair and Aimee and it is Christmas as well. It’s a really upsetting time of year for them.”
Mr Harper, who is a foreign language teacher, uploaded a series of images to social media in the days before his disappearance.
Following a search from French authorities, Mr Harper has yet to be found – but it was discovered his last social media post was “geotagged” to a hilltop overlooking Roquebrune-Cap-Martin between the principality and the town of Menton.
His brother added: “I’ve walked the coastline from Roquebrune-Cap-Martin at Stevens last known location to Ventimiglia yesterday.
“The day before we walked the coast from Ventimiglia to Sanremo. If Steven survived the mushrooms he would fit well in Italy and he would be able to survive going along the coast with very little to no money.
“The weather is getting very cold at night but days are still warm. There are showers and water taps all along the coast. There is fresh fruit hanging from the trees along with dates. Water and fruit sounds about right for Steven.
“The problem is not knowing and thinking he may be living in a debilitated state.”
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