Investigators are trying to recover a body from the wreckage of the plane that was carrying Cardiff City footballer Emiliano Sala and pilot David Ibbotson.
The missing aircraft was found off the coast of Guernsey on Sunday night. It disappeared on January 21 as it travelled from Nantes in France to Cardiff, where Sala’s English Premier League club is based.
The plane is about 67 metres underwater.
The Air Accidents Investigation Branch confirmed on Monday that a body had been detected in the plane by remotely operated vehicles scanning the site.
“We are attempting to recover the body. If we are successful, we will consider the feasibility of recovering the aircraft wreckage,” an AAIB spokesman said.
“Strong tidal conditions mean we can only use the remotely operated vehicle for limited periods each day and this will mean that progress is slow.
“Regardless of the results, we will not be making a further statement until the families have been informed.”
On the day the wreckage was found, Sala’s sister, Romina, posted a poignant photo of his dog on social media, captioned “Nala is waiting for you too”.
Mr Ibbotson had requested to descend before the light plane lost contact with Jersey air traffic control on January 21.
An official search operation was called off three days later, after Guernsey’s harbour master, Captain David Barker, said the chances of survival following such a long period were “extremely remote”.
The remains of the aircraft were tracked down by a team co-ordinated by ocean scientist David Mearns, who has found some of the most elusive wrecks in the world.
Mr Mearns – who is known as the “Shipwreck Hunter” – and his team found the plane within two hours of starting their search.
He told the Press Association the discovery had been so fast because the team had been looking for a static crash site rather than working in a dynamic environment searching for survivors.
“No one should walk away with the impression that the coast guard and also the Channel Islands air search did anything other than a professional job,” he said.