All evidence shows B.C. man lynched in Peru had shot and killed Indigenous healer: prosecutor

Sebastian Woodroffe, 41, was allegedly lynched in retaliation for a healer's shooting death. Peruvian authorities say investigators have confirmed he had gunpowder on his clothes.

Sebastian Woodroffe was allegedly lynched in retaliation for healer's death

Friends say Sebastian Woodroffe, a Comox Valley-area man, had travelled to Peru several times to experiment with ayahuasca, a hallucinogenic drink. (Sebastian Woodroffe/CBC)

A Peruvian prosecutor says all the evidence gathered indicates that a Vancouver Island man killed an 81-year-old traditional healer in the Amazon.

Sebastian Woodroffe was killed in a brutal lynching days after he was believed to have shot and killed the esteemed Indigenous leader.

Bullet cartridges found near the body of Olivia Arevalo Lomas were traced back to a gun the 41-year-old B.C. man had purchased earlier in April, and gunpowder was found on his clothes, according to Ricardo Jimenez, chief prosecutor in the remote Ucayali province.

Traditional healer and elder Olivia Arevalo Lomas of the Shipibo-Conibo Indigenous people of Peru was shot and killed at her home. (Temple of the Way of Light/YouTube)

Woodroffe had gone to Peru to learn about medicinal plants in order to help people suffering from addiction. He was one of Arevalo's students at the time of her death.

Investigators are searching for two people believed responsible for Woodroffe's death.

Villagers had accused Woodroffe of killing Arevalo in the region of Ucayali. A mob allegedly killed him for revenge, according to Peru's interior ministry.

A minute-and-a-half-long cellphone video of the lynching, which was posted on Facebook, showed two men dragging Woodroffe by a noose around his neck as others looked on. His body was later found buried nearby.

Woodroffe had been Arevalo's patient, and her family believes he killed her because she refused to conduct a ritual in which the hallucinogenic Amazonian plant brew ayahuasca is used for healing and spiritual growth.

With files from Thomson Reuters and CBC News