Essex: Thai police ‘close’ to arrest in Hannah Witheridge murder case

Hannah Witheridge

Hannah Witheridge - Credit: Archant

Police in Thailand are looking for a man in the country’s capital Bangkok in connection with the brutal murder of University of Essex student Hannah Witheridge.

Police investigating the deaths of Miss Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, are trying to trace a man who left the island of Koh Tao the day their bodies were discovered on the island.

They said they believe at least three men were involved in attacking the young Britons.

But police colonel Kissana Phathanacharoen refused to comment on the new lines of inquiry and claims they are “close to making an arrest”.

Miss Witheridge, who was living in Colchester, and Mr Miller, from Jersey, were found with severe head wounds on the island’s Sairee beach on September 15.

A bloodstained garden hoe, believed to be the murder weapon, was found nearby.

Post-mortem examinations revealed that Ms Witheridge died from head wounds while Mr Miller was killed by severe blows to the head and drowning.

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Around 150 police have been posted to the island but are so far apparently no closer to finding the killer.

A spokesman for the Royal Thai Police said on Monday the force was looking into claims the pair had a row with a Thai man in a bar before they were killed.

On Sunday Mr Phathanacharoen said officers were investigating new evidence suggesting the murders might have been due to “sexual jealousy”.

He said: “We have discovered fresh evidence which could lead to a new suspect who may have had a relationship or one-night stand with Hannah or one of her friends or David the night before they were killed.”

Last week police said they were looking for more than one suspect following unconfirmed reports that the DNA of two Asian men had been found on Miss Witheridge’s body.