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Hopes fade for man after suspected croc attac -

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LISA MILLAR: Hope is fading for a man believed to have been attacked by a five metre crocodile in
far north Queensland.

Today searchers are scouring the river bed surrounding the boat ramp where the 62-year-old
disappeared.

Two crocodiles were seen lurking in the area overnight.

But there's been no sign of the camper since he went missing while checking a crab pot early
yesterday.

And now his wife has been admitted to hospital, believed to be overwhelmed by her loss.

Annie Guest reports.

ANNIE GUEST: It's not a good sign, searchers looking for Arthur Booker are now turning their
attention to the bed of the Endeavour River on southern Cape York Peninsula.

JAMES NEWMAN: They will be looking in the water today and having a look at the bottom to see if
they can't pull anything off the bottom.

ANNIE GUEST: James Newman is a spokesman for the state's Parks and Wildlife Service.

He says two big crocodiles were seen by torchlight last night around the boat ramp where Arthur
Booker disappeared.

JAMES NEWMAN: And so we need to make sure the searchers are safe while they're doing the search so
essentially what we're advising is that they have someone hold their belt at all times when they're
leaning over the boat.

ANNIE GUEST: The only other signs of the 62-year-old from Logan, south of Brisbane are ominous.

The camper had apparently told his wife he was going to check a crab pot in the mud brown Endeavour
River.

His video camera was found on the river bank. The rope on his crap pot had been snapped and there
were crocodile slide marks to the water.

It gets worse, about 100 metres upstream searchers found his watch and one of his shoes.

Arthur Booker's wife Doris is now in hospital in Cooktown, south of the campsite, she's believed to
be overwhelmed by the situation. Her sister and daughter have travelled to Cooktown to be with her.

People are already extending their sympathy to the family, including a woman who saved a friend
from a crocodile attack, also on Cape York Peninsula.

ALICIA SOROHAN: I sort of feel very sorry for them, I can imagine what they are going through at
the time.

It's not good at all, never usually is the outcome at all with a crocodile, but fortunately we were
pretty lucky but I feel very sorry for them, sympathy to them.

ANNIE GUEST: Alicia Sorohan is a grandmother who jumped on a crocodile's back four years ago,
forcing it to release its victim.

ALICIA SOROHAN: We've been up there since 1981 and always has been signs there but people just seem
to disregard them for some reason.

ANNIE GUEST: It's true it's not unusual to see crocodile warning signs in far north Queensland.

But it's not known whether Arthur Booker took a risk, or was simply unlucky.

The large salties, as their known, like to dwell around the river mouths along the pristine
coastline and in the inland rivers. The problem is, tourists are also attracted to these parts.

Ironically, the campsite where Arthur Booker was staying lists crocodiles as an attraction. In fact
the crocodile suspected of taking him even has a name, Charlie.

But police say it's not yet certain that he was the victim of a crocodile attack. However Inspector
Ian Swan says the broken crab pot rope was torn.

IAN SWAN: It wasn't a clean cut, certainly it hasn't been done with a knife.

ANNIE GUEST: There have been several attacks in the area in recent years.

In 2005 a fisherman died after a crocodile dragged him from his canoe in Lakefield National Park
just west of the latest incident.

The four metre reptile was shot by park rangers.

LISA MILLAR: That's Annie Guest reporting from Queensland.