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Search called off for fourth victim from capsized boat

March 13, 2012 |  7:38 pm

The search has been called off for a fourth man believed to have died after a 24-foot recreational boat was found capsized near Santa Cruz Island, said Santa Barbara County Sheriff's Department officials.

“Our dive team went out at about 10 a.m." Monday, said sheriff’s spokesman Drew Sugars. “We completed our search at sundown and didn’t go back out today.”

The divers had “very good visibility,” Sugars said, and covered a large amount of area. A missing persons report for Jose Juan Becerra Perez, 37, of Camarillo has been filed.

The Sheriff’s Department had been conducting the search with the U.S. Coast Guard, which recovered the bodies of three other men Sunday.

The men have been identified as Sieng Sophorn Bun, 37, of Oxnard; Edgar Allen Isnecc, 54, of Port Hueneme; and Ramiro Alvarez Duarte, 52, of Oxnard. Their boat was reported missing Sunday morning and the overturned craft was located about 1 p.m.

Searchers briefly spotted the fourth body, but the helicopter had to leave the area to refuel. The crew was unable to locate the body again, officials said.

Authorities from both the Sheriff's Department and the Coast Guard are investigating why the boat capsized. The coroner has not yet determined the cause of death for the three men.

“Preliminary evidence indicate that hypothermia and/or drowning may have been the cause of death,” Sugars said.

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-- Rosanna Xia

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