Thai police investigate student's murder

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The Independent Online

A British student found floating in the sea off a Thai holiday resort was hit with a blunt object and dragged across the beach before drowning, a post-mortem examination has revealed.

A murder investigation is under way on the island of Koh Samui after Katherine Horton, 21, of Cardiff, south Wales, was found by a jet skier, still wearing an evening dress. Ms Horton, a psychology student at Reading University, had flown to the popular backpacker destination to see in the new year with a friend. She was last seen alive on New Year's Day.

Dr Pattana Kitkailart, who performed the autopsy at Bangkok's police hospital, said: "There were wounds on her head from being hit with a blunt object and on her body and arms there were signs that she was dragged." He said further tests were required to ascertain whether she had been raped.

"The body had been taken by the tide," added Police Superintendent Thanomsak Aksornam. "We have no suspects at this stage."

Ms Horton's family said in a statement: "She brought us so much happiness ... words cannot express the emptiness we feel at our loss. Our only comfort is the many happy memories we have, which we will always treasure."