But they never recovered a body.
On Wednesday, Yahoo News Japan reported that Mr Sneddon had been spotted in North Korea, where he is believed to live. He reportedly works as an English teacher, and has a wife and two children.
Mr Sneddon’s parents, Roy and Kathleen, never believed the official story that their son had died falling into a river. Knowing North Korea's reputation for kidnapping foreigners, they believed the Kim regime sought out their son for his fluency in Korean – which he used during his time spent as a Mormon missionary in South Korea - and snatched him for their own purposes.
Friday, September 2, 2016
"Student missing for 12 years was 'kidnapped to teach English to Kim Jong-un'"
"David Sneddon was presumed dead after he vanished in the Yunnan Province in western China when he was 24. A student at Brigham Young University, police said Mr Sneddon likely died while hiking in Tiger Leaping Gorge near the Jinsha River on 14 August 2004."