(REUTERS) - Evidence gathered in an investigation into the crash of EgyptAir Flight 804 in the Mediterranean Sea in May shows the plane likely broke up in mid-air after a fire near or inside the cockpit that quickly overwhelmed the crew, according to Egyptian officials involved in the inquiry, The New York Times reported on Friday.
But the officials could not determine whether the fire thought to have caused the crash had been set off by a mechanical malfunction or by a malicious act, the report said.
The findings are based on information from the Airbus A320's flight data recorder and cockpit voice recorder along with an analysis of the condition and distribution of recovered debris, including human remains, according to forensic and aviation officials in Cairo, the report said.
The officials spoke this week on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to discuss the investigation publicly, The New York Times said.
The Airbus A320 from Paris to Cairo plunged into the eastern Mediterranean on May 19 and all 66 people on board were killed.