The family of missing teenager Liam Smith have been told that a male body has been found in a remote wooded area in Aberdeenshire.
Police Scotland confirmed the body was male, but said no formal identification has taken place.
In a statement, it said enquires were “ongoing” and there are “not believed to be any suspicious circumstances surrounding the death”.
A member of the public reported finding the body at about 3pm on Friday in the Craig of Affrusk area.
Liam Smith, 16, has been missing since 17 November 2018 and was last seen boarding a bus from Aberdeen to Lumphanan.
Police have carried out searches using the Police Scotland helicopter, specialist search dogs, police search advisers and the dive and marine unit.
Fields, water and dense woodland around the A93 – along with the Crathes Castle Estate – were scoured in the search for the teenager.
More than 200 potential sightings of Liam were reported.
Five weeks after he disappeared, his mother Alix said the prospect of facing a Christmas without him was a “really difficult situation”.
She said: “We understand the public’s interest and we really do appreciate the support everyone has given by sharing the posts and putting up posters.”
A post on Twitter which urged social media users to share a picture of Liam was retweeted over 48,000 times.