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Desperate Search For Five People Missing After Boat Found

Authorities in the Torres Strait are searching for five people, including a 9-year-old boy, after the boat they were travelling on was found with no one on-board, two days after the group went missing.

The vessel was reported overdue late on Wednesday evening, just hours after the group departed Badu Island en route to their home of Dauan Island in the Torres Strait.

Queensland Police said authorities immediately launched a search and rescue operation using rotary aircraft, which was later expanded at first light on Thursday.

The other four passengers on board the vessel included two 21-year-old women, a 22-year-old man, and a 44-year-old man.

Their 7-metre boat was discovered 4.5 kilometres west of Dauan Island at around 1:50pm on Friday, police said.

Authorities in nearby Papua New Guinea have informed Queensland Police that a child's body had been located near Old Mawatta Village on mainland Papua New Guinea.

On Friday, Queensland Police said they were trying to determine whether the body of the child was that of the missing 9-year-old, but said the body had been found "outside of the search area".

The families of the missing people are being kept informed of the aerial and water search and rescue efforts, Queensland Police said.