Murder hunt ex-boyfriend found dead

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The Independent Online

The ex-boyfriend of a murdered Red Cross worker has been found dead near a railway line, police said.

Detectives launched a manhunt for 35-year-old Martin Collett after the body of Angela Hoyt, 34, was discovered at her home in Glebeland in Hatfield, Hertfordshire, at around 5.20pm on Tuesday.

A spokeswoman for Hertfordshire Constabulary said: "The body of a man was found just north of Hatfield train station at about 11.30pm on Friday.

"Hertfordshire officers were informed by the British Transport Police (BTP) later that night and have been working with the BTP to identify the man.

"We can now confirm that it is that of Martin Collett, who was wanted for the murder of Angela Hoyt."

Detective Chief Inspector Mark Ross from the Bedfordshire and Hertfordshire Major Crime Unit, said: "Now we have found Martin, this brings our search to a conclusion and we are not looking for anyone else in connection with Angela's death.

"I would like to take this opportunity to express my condolences to Angela's family and close friends. Angela's family have shown great courage and dignity while also helping and supporting our investigation.

"This is an extremely tragic case involving two people who were known to each other. Both families are being supported by specialist family liaison officers at this difficult time."

Police had previously been focusing the search for Mr Collett on the grounds of a stately home in Hatfield after detectives received a number of reports from members of the public that he had been seen in the area.

Mr Ross added: "My team and I are very grateful for all the assistance we have received from members of the public, partner agencies and the media during our search. We would like to thank them all for their help."

Police said both deaths would now be handed to Hertfordshire Coroner Service to investigate.

Earlier it emerged that the former couple had worked for the Home Office.

Mr Collett worked as a briefing manager for Labour home secretaries David Blunkett and Charles Clarke at around the same time that Ms Hoyt was employed as a junior member of the Home Office media team.

A Home Office spokesman said: "They both did work in the Home Office."

Days before her death, Ms Hoyt made a report of harassment to Hertfordshire Police. The Independent Police Complaints Commission (IPCC) has launched an investigation into the force's response to the complaint.

IPCC commissioner Sarah Green said: "The IPCC is independently investigating Hertfordshire Police's response to a report of harassment made at Hatfield Police Station on the afternoon of May 20 2011.

"The woman who made the allegation, Angela Hoyt, was subsequently murdered."

In a statement released by police, Ms Hoyt's family described her as a "very ambitious and driven girl".

They said "She had a passion for human rights and wanted to use her work to help improve the lives of those less fortunate. She had strong opinions and convictions."

Ms Hoyt, who was born in Windsor, in Ontario, Canada and moved to the UK in 1999, had recently returned from a three-month role in Pakistan as part of her work with the Red Cross.

She had been working as a public affairs and communications adviser with the International Committee of the Red Cross since February 2008.

She is survived by her parents, Barb and Dwight Hoyt, her identical twin sister Ami Watanabe Ms Watanabe's husband Garry, and niece and nephew Tori and Kai.

Officers have not yet released any further details about how she died.