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Bodies of seven victims found after private helicopter crash in northern Italy

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By Euronews  with AP, AFP
Emergency services had paused the search on Thursday evening due to bad weather.
Emergency services had paused the search on Thursday evening due to bad weather.   -   Copyright  Vigili del Fuoco via AP

Alpine rescue services have found the bodies of all seven people who died in a private helicopter crash.

The aircraft had gone missing in a heavily forested, mountainous area of northern Italy during a storm on Thursday.

The helicopter had reportedly taken off from the city of Lucca and was heading for Treviso went it disappeared from radar screens while flying over the province of Modena, in the Tuscan–Emilian Apennines.

Officials were then alerted to the crash site when a mountain runner spotted the possible wreckage near Mount Cusna on Saturday morning.

Prosecutors have cordoned off the mountainous area as part of the investigation into the incident.

Four Turkish businessmen -- connected to the industrial group Eczacibasi -- and two Lebanese businessmen died in the crash, alongside the Italian pilot.

Eczacibasi said that its employees had been in Italy for a paper technologies trade fair and were travelling to a production facility.

In a statement, the company said it was in contact with authorities in Italy, the Turkish Foreign Ministry and the Turkish Embassy in Italy