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.”

News
ebooksNow available in paperback
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Day In a Page

In a world of Saudi bullying, right-wing Israeli ministers and the twilight of Obama, Iran is looking like a possible policeman of the Gulf

Iran is shifting from pariah to possible future policeman of the Gulf

Robert Fisk on our crisis with Iran
The young are the new poor: A third of young people pushed into poverty

The young are the new poor

Sharp increase in the number of under-25s living in poverty
Greens on the march: ‘We could be on the edge of something very big’

Greens on the march

‘We could be on the edge of something very big’
Revealed: the case against Bill Cosby - through the stories of his accusers

Revealed: the case against Bill Cosby

Through the stories of his accusers
Why are words like 'mongol' and 'mongoloid' still bandied about as insults?

The Meaning of Mongol

Why are the words 'mongol' and 'mongoloid' still bandied about as insults?
Mau Mau uprising: Kenyans still waiting for justice join class action over Britain's role in the emergency

Kenyans still waiting for justice over Mau Mau uprising

Thousands join class action over Britain's role in the emergency
Isis in Iraq: The trauma of the last six months has overwhelmed the remaining Christians in the country

The last Christians in Iraq

After 2,000 years, a community will try anything – including pretending to convert to Islam – to avoid losing everything, says Patrick Cockburn
Black Friday: Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Helpful discounts for Christmas shoppers, or cynical marketing by desperate retailers?

Britain braced for Black Friday
Bill Cosby's persona goes from America's dad to date-rape drugs

From America's dad to date-rape drugs

Stories of Bill Cosby's alleged sexual assaults may have circulated widely in Hollywood, but they came as a shock to fans, says Rupert Cornwell
Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

Clare Balding: 'Women's sport is kicking off at last'

As fans flock to see England women's Wembley debut against Germany, the TV presenter on an exciting 'sea change'
Oh come, all ye multi-faithful: The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?

Oh come, all ye multi-faithful

The Christmas jumper is in fashion, but should you wear your religion on your sleeve?
Dr Charles Heatley: The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

The GP off to do battle in the war against Ebola

Dr Charles Heatley on joining the NHS volunteers' team bound for Sierra Leone
Flogging vlogging: First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books

Flogging vlogging

First video bloggers conquered YouTube. Now they want us to buy their books
Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show: US channels wage comedy star wars

Saturday Night Live vs The Daily Show

US channels wage comedy star wars
When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine? When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible

When is a wine made in Piedmont not a Piemonte wine?

When EU rules make Italian vineyards invisible