The wife of a pilot flying a plane that crashed near Guernsey, killing footballer Emiliano Sala, has said she hopes new evidence suggesting the pair suffered carbon monoxide poisoning will clear her husband's name.
Nora Ibbotson's comments came after an interim bulletin by the Air Accidents Investigation Bureau (AAIB) indicated there was a leak of the deadly odourless gas on board the Piper Malibu her husband, David, had been flying before it disappeared off-radar near Les Casquets lighthouse on 21 January.
Sala's body was recovered by deep-sea divers from the scene of the crash weeks later, but David Ibbotson remains missing.
Released last week, the AAIB's report said a post-mortem examination of the 28-year-old striker's body showed he had been exposed to a "potentially fatal" level of carbon monoxide.
Observing that Mr Ibbotson would have likely also been exposed to the same given the lack of divide between cabin and cockpit, the report added that such exposure would "reduce or inhibit a pilot's ability to fly an aircraft."
Video: David Ibbotson's wife speaking about the carbon monoxide revelation. (Metro/GMB)
The findings followed speculation over whether Mr Ibbotson was appropriately qualified to fly at nighttime, given that he was colourblind.
Mr Ibbotson's wife has since spoken out, telling Good Morning Britain last week that the AAIB's findings were "a relief", as they indicated a "problem... out of David's control."
Referring to the gas, which is known as 'a silent killer', Mrs Ibbotson later said: "[They] couldn't smell it, couldn't see it. If [David] knew, he wouldn't have flown..."
Speaking of the emotional difficulties arising from the accident, she commented: "Every day it is hard. I haven't got Dave and I haven't got a body."
Pictured: Underwater pictures of the plane wreckage. (AAIB)
The AAIB confirmed last week that it wouldn't be attempting to recover the plane wreckage, explaining that doing so would not "add significantly to the investigation" into the death of Sala and disappearance of David Ibbotson.
Mr Ibbotson's daughter had previously launched a crowdfunding initiative to help recover her father's body. The GoFundMe page generated over £300,000, and attracted donations from footballers including Kylian Mbappé, but the resulting dive was unsuccessful.
Pictured top: Pilot David Ibbotson, whose body was not recovered from the Piper Malibu wreckage near Guernsey, and his wife, Nora. (David Ibbotson/Facebook)
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