Renee Cluff

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Discovery of man who disappeared in the Daintree prompts further police investigation


Police say a man whose disappearance in the Daintree Rainforest sparked a massive search effort had likely received help to survive.

29 Victorian man Milan Lemic was found last night, more than three weeks after he was reported missing.



Inspector Denis Fitzpatrick said he may have been hiding.

“We cannot confirm at this time that this is a remarkable story of survival,” he said.

“The police involved in the location and returned to a place of safety this individual yesterday have some reservations in confirming that.

“It could be a case of active avoidance.

“The police at this time who have had involvement with Mr Lemic have severe concerns as to his mental stability and he’s been taken to a place of safety.”

Mr Lemic was last seen next to his bogged utility at Bairds Crossing on the afternoon of December 22.

Police located him around 6pm last night on the Creb Track, where he had been spotted twice by a motorcyclist.

They say he was in good physical condition.

“He did not run away from the police,” Insp Fitzpatrick said.

“He was assisting and obliging with the police when located.

“He has told police, yes, that he has been consuming berries in the rainforest.”

However, when asked whether Mr Lemic had lost weight or suffered bites and scratches Inspector Fitzpatrick replied, ‘nah not really.’

Police suspect someone had been assisting him.

“That is a firm possibility and that will probably be a tangent of the investigation to explain his survivability and his level of health in these conditions for well over three weeks.

“I can’t confirm that he didn’t want to be fund but I can confirm that considerable resources went in with police, SES and volunteers in this search,” Insp Fitzpatrick said.

Mr Lemic’s family flew to the region last week and his mother gave an emotional appeal to the public to help continue the search.

“Family were told of his safe location last night and they’re ecstatic,” Insp Fitzpatrick said.

“They’re very happy and overwhelmed that he’s been found.”