A nine-year-old boy is feared dead after being dragged under water by a crocodile while swimming in waters off northern Australia.
Northern Territory police say the boy was swimming with a group of people at Port Bradshaw when he was grabbed by the crocodile.
Nearby people attempted to kill the crocodile with spears, but it then dragged the boy farther into the water.
Police planned to continue searching but expressed pessimism about the chances of finding the boy alive.
Two weeks ago, another crocodile snatched a seven-year-old girl who was swimming at a Northern Territory waterhole.
The crocodile was fatally shot the next day and the girl’s remains were found inside it.
They join officers from Nhulunbuy Police station, based about 80km north of the attack site, as well as local sea rangers.
A police spokesman said the search would likely continue throughout Sunday afternoon but grave fears were held for the boy.
‘‘Not too many people come away from a crocodile attack, I’m afraid,’’ he said.
Reports from Australia say the four-metre crocodile had previously been spotted in the area.