Search for missing Belgian backpacker Theo Hayez called off

The search for a Belgian backpacker, missing from Byron Bay for almost five weeks, has officially been called off.

Theo Hayez hasn’t been seen since he left the Cheeky Monkey Bar in Byron Bay on Friday, May 31.

He wasn’t reported missing until June 6 when staff at the hostel he was staying in realised he hadn’t returned.


CCTV footage shows the 18-year-old walking through the streets of Byron while also visiting a bottle shop.

His mobile phone pinged near the lighthouse at Cape Byron, but there’s been no trace of him or any of his possessions.

The search was suspended last month due to bad weather but another final search was carried out this week with crews again focusing on the lighthouse.

Three Police officers from Belgian also arrived in Byron on the weekend to assist in the search and investigation.

Tweed-Byron Police Commander, Superintendent Dave Roptell says while the search has been called off, the investigation will continue.

Superintendent Roptell has thanked the Byron community who have helped with the search.

“It’s times like this which shows the strength of our community. We want to thank each and every person who assisted and who provided support.

“Throughout the entire investigation we have been liaising with the Belgian Federal Police, keeping them informed of our progress and work collaboratively with them. Belgian authorities have been appreciative of the work being undertaken.”

Theo’s family members, who have been in Australia since last month were informed of the decision today and have requested privacy.