St Lucia death: British man killed defending his wife on yacht

Roger Pratt, 62, and his wife Margaret had planned to leave the St Lucian port to continue their round-the-world voyage just hours before the attack, but had been prevented by officials

Three people are being held by police in the Caribbean island of St Lucia after a British man was killed while defending his wife on a once-in-a-lifetime trip.

Roger Pratt, 62, was killed on board the couple’s yacht in the town of Vieux Fort on Friday night, according to police. His wife, Margaret, 60, was treated for injuries sustained in the attack, which took place while the Warwickshire couple were on a round-the-world trip.

It emerged on Sunday that Mr Pratt had attended a seminar on handling piracy. Mrs Pratt wrote in her blog on  13 November: “Today, Roger went to a session on piracy and found it interesting in terms of practical tips. The must-have accessories are motion sensors linked to an app of a loud barking dog to deter intruders. It makes sense.”

A St Lucian police spokesman said Mr Pratt died trying to defend his wife from the attackers, but that there was no evidence he was shot.

“Nobody has been arrested yet but there are some guys in custody,” he said. “The investigators are very busy looking at what happened.”

The couple had sailed to St Lucia from the UK via the Algarve and had planned to continue their round-the-world voyage just hours before the attack, but their plan to leave had been thwarted by officials.

Writing on her blog in the hours before the attack, Mrs Pratt said: “On Thursday morning the plan was to clear out from Soufriere, then to travel south and use up the 72 hours before we had to be away.

“But bureaucracy intervened. HM Customs and Excise in Soufriere told us that exit had to happen within 24 hours of clearing out; and that anyway, we couldn't clear out of Soufriere that day because the Immigration Officer hadn't come to work(!!)” The couple had been celebrating Mrs Pratt's 60th birthday on the island (AP) The couple had been celebrating Mrs Pratt's 60th birthday on the island (AP)

Their boat was moored off the Vieux Fort coast where they had been staying while celebrating Mrs Pratt's 60th birthday.

Writing on her LinkedIn profile before she left, Mrs Pratt said: “Off travelling! The plan is to be in the Caribbean for my 60th birthday in January 2014... all a bit of a leap into the unknown. Please stay in touch - I plan to be an assiduous correspondent!”

The couple lived in the village of Moreton Morrell before embarking on their adventure.

St Lucian tourism minister Lorne Theophilus said: “It is with much regret that I and other industry partners have learnt of the unfortunate incident which has resulted in the loss of life of a visitor to our shores.

“At this time we extend our sincerest condolences to the family of British national Roger Pratt. To his wife, who also sustained injuries as a result of the attack off the Vieux Fort coast, we extend our deepest sympathies. Our prayers are with her for a speedy recovery.

“This is an active investigation and law enforcement is leading the charge in an attempt to bring the perpetrator or perpetrators to justice speedily. Law enforcement officials have briefed myself and other senior tourism officials on aspects of the case although I am not at liberty to share some of those details with you at this time.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

The Greek referendum exposes a gaping hole at the heart of the European Union – its distinct lack of any genuine popular legitimacy

Gaping hole at the heart of the European Union

Treatment of Greece has shown up a lack of genuine legitimacy
Number of young homeless in Britain 'more than three times the official figures'

'Everything changed when I went to the hostel'

Number of young homeless people in Britain is 'more than three times the official figures'
Compton Cricket Club

Compton Cricket Club

Portraits of LA cricketers from notorious suburb to be displayed in London
London now the global money-laundering centre for the drug trade, says crime expert

Wlecome to London, drug money-laundering centre for the world

'Mexico is its heart and London is its head'
The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court that helps a winner keep on winning

The Buddhist temple minutes from Centre Court

It helps a winner keep on winning
Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

Is this the future of flying?

Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

Isis are barbarians

but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

Call of the wild

How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

The science of swearing

What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

Africa on the menu

Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'