COROZAL DISTRICT, Belize -- New details from international authorities reveal disturbing details in the deaths of an American man and Canadian woman in Belize.
According to local police, Francesca Matus of Canada and Drew De Voursney of Georgia had been missing in the Corozal District of the Central American country since April 26 and hadn't been heard from since.
Authorities had been searching for the couple for days when they found the white-colored Isuzu Rodeo in a cane field around 1:30 p.m. April 30. A day later, just a few kilometers away, police found the couple's bodies in another cane field.
Police said De Vorrsney's body was found laying on top of Matus'. Both of the victims' were found bound with tape and their bodies were "in an advanced state of decomposition." An autopsy showed that the two had been strangled to death.
Police in Belize are continuing to look into the couple's deaths and have been working with the U.S. embassy and the Canadian consulate during the investigation.
At this time, it's not known why the two were killed.
Friends told 11Alive that Matus and De Voursney, a Marine, met while serving together in Fallujah in 2004. In 2016, De Voursney moved to the growing expat community in Corozal, Belize after he completed diving school.
While there is no official travel warning for Belize, the U.S. Department of State does warn the country is "rated high for crime" and "criminals frequently target tourists, including those at resorts and on the roads and riverways."
De Voursney's family and friends in Georgia have started a GoFundMe page with a $20,000 goal to hire a private investigator to help get answers in his and Matus' deaths.
"I will not let anyone to allow his death be the end of it all," De Voursney's friend Brandon Bar wrote on the page. "Today is the day where I demand answers to so many questions all of us have about this whole mysterious abduction and their senseless deaths."
Here is what is known about the couple's disappearance and death:
TIMELINE | According to family friend Brandon Barfield
► Tuesday, April 25: Francesca is spotted at a grocery store in Corozal Tuesday morning. That night, Francesca checks in for her flight home to Canada. At 11 p.m., the couple was last seen waving goodbye to their friends at Scotty's Bar.
► Wednesday, April 26 8:30 a.m.: A friend arrived at Francesca's home in Belize to pick her up for her flight. He noticed her Isuzu Rodeo was missing. Inside the home, he found packed luggage, cash, and passports for Francesca and Drew. There was no sign of a struggle.
► Thursday, April 27: A search party was organized and retraced the couple's last known whereabouts. Helicopters searched for her missing vehicle.
► Sunday, April 30: The white Isuzu was found north of Corozal in a sugar cane field.
► Monday, April 1: Belize authorities contact families to inform them they've found Francesca and Drew's bodies
"Today is the first day of seeking out the people who are responsible for robbing us of the ones we love," Brandon said. "I want you to know that it is not over yet."
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