British businessman dies in suspected crocodile attack in India


Lewis Smith
Saturday 26 May 2012 02:25

The body of one of two Britons who went missing after setting out to canoe along a crocodile-infested river in India has been found by a search team.

Ian Turton's body was located four days after he was reported missing and two days after his abandoned canoe was discovered. His friend, Michael Easton, is still missing.

The cause of death remains unclear, but it is feared the two men were attacked by at least one of the reptiles as they negotiated the Cauvery River near Bangalore. Searchers are continuing to hunt for Mr Easton, who comes from London.

A spokeswoman for the Foreign and Commonweath Office said: "We can confirm the death of a British national while on an excursion on the Cauvery River. Another British national is still missing."

Mr Turton, from York, worked for US company Tenneco Automotive in India.

Sandro Paparelli, the company's vice-president, said: "Ian was a valued member of our advanced manufacturing and engineering team. He was a much appreciated colleague and leaves many friends all over the Tenneco world.

"We are all profoundly saddened by this tragic loss of life and extend our deepest sympathies to Ian's family and friends."

Superintendent Kaushlendra Kumar, of the police team in charge of the hunt, said signals from at least one mobile phone carried by the pair stopped at 4.15pm on Saturday. He added: "They had an inflatable boat and lifejackets with them, so it is clear they were prepared to be cruising on the river."

At least one report suggested that their canoe had been found with holes in it caused by crocodile bites, in a gorge notorious for having a high number of the reptiles with a reputation for attacking people in boats.

Mr Turton's brother, Nigel, said before the discovery of the body: "He is always up to something.

"He has been all over the world on different adventures."

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