Murdered backpacker 'was attacked by at least two men'

Click to follow
The Independent Online

The body of the murdered backpacker Katherine Horton was brought back to the Britain yesterday as DNA tests showed she had been attacked by at least two men.

The 21-year-old student's father Ian and her brother Christopher accompanied the body on the journey from the Thai island of Koh Samui to their home in Cardiff, south Wales.

Thai police said two different DNA samples were recovered from Ms Horton's body which was found floating in the sea at the resort of Lamai. Tests are reported to have shown the samples come from Asian men and police have been testing a number of Thai men in an effort to find matches.

They also revealed that Ms Horton's mobile phone had been found by a British couple on a beach in Thailand. It is claimed that they picked up the phone soon after spotting the south Wales student on the evening of her death. The two Britons are helping police pinpoint exactly where the phone was found.

Ms Horton was killed during the first week of a fortnight-long backpacking tour to Thailand with fellow Reading University student Ruth Adams. She went missing after wandering on to a beach to take a call from her mother.

Elizabeth Horton told police that the conversation with her daughter was cut short when she heard a chilling scream and the line went dead. She was raped before being beaten unconscious and dumped in the sea, where her body was discovered the following morning on 2 January.

Thai police have been DNA testing potential murder suspects after recovering semen from Ms Horton's body. The Thai Prime Minister, Thaksin Shinawatra, has ordered police to find the killer as soon as possible to avoid further damage to the country's reputation.