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UK police examining murder probe to return from Thailand

British police who travelled to Thailand to review the investigation into the murders of backpackers Hannah Witheridge and David Miller are due to return to the UK, having completed their work "as far as possible".

Metropolitan Police officers flew out to the Thai island of Koh Tao last month to work with the Royal Thai Police after an agreement between David Cameron and military ruler General Prayuth Chan-ocha.

Hannah Witheridge and David Miller were discovered on a beach on Koh Tao.

It followed international concern about the way the case has been handled by the Thai authorities.

Mr Miller, 24, from Jersey, and 23-year-old Ms Witheridge, from Great Yarmouth in Norfolk, were found dead on a beach in September.

Scotland Yard said the British officers will compile a report from their review.

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Doctors group: Thailand death shows risk of 'cheap surgery'

The death of a British woman in Thailand highlights the dangers of 'cheap surgery' abroad, one of the UK's leading plastic surgeons has said.

Michael Cadier, president of the British Association of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons, said: "This tragic case highlights how, if lured by the prospect of what is essentially 'cheap surgery', patients can be left vulnerable."

"In some cases, patients are even being treated by a person without proper surgical credentials - if any at all - which breaches all the fundamental guidelines for safe practice in cosmetic surgery in the UK," he added.

"When you go abroad in search of 'cheap cosmetic surgery', you're entrusting your life to individuals whose main concern may be their pocket - not the patient."

Warnings after Brit dies during surgery in Thai clinic

People have been warned to properly research clinics in Thailand before having treatment following the death of a British woman.

The 24-year-old British woman died after undergoing surgery at a clinic in Bangkok. Credit: APTN

The 24-year-old stopped breathing during cosmetic surgery and later died, despite efforts to revive her.

Police said they believed similar incidents "happened often", and reiterated their belief that the surgeon did not have the appropriate qualification.

" We would like to warn people that they should examine [a clinic first]," Bangkok police chief Ittipol Piriyapinyo said.

"Like this case, this doctor did not have a specific license. We will have to look into the case again whether the act was intentional.”

British woman dies during cosmetic surgery in Thailand

A British woman has died at a clinic in Thailand after undergoing cosmetic surgery.

The 24-year-old stopped breathing after being given anesthetic during the operation.

Police outside the clinic in Bangkok where a British woman died. Credit: APTN

A doctor has been arrested amid claims he was not qualified to carry out cosmetic surgery, a Thai health official said.

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesperson told ITV News: "We were informed of the death of a British national in Thailand on 23 October.

"We stand ready to provide assistance."

UK officers examine Thai probe of backpacker murders

Three British officers are in Thailand to begin a week's examination of the local police investigation into the murders of British tourists Hannah Witheridge and David Miller, the Foreign Office has said.

The trio - a Metropolitan DCI from the homicide and major crime unit, a Metropolitan forensic ops coordinator and an experienced homicide detective from Norfolk Police - arrived in Bangkok yesterday and will travel to the island of Koh Tao in the coming days.

Hannah Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, were discovered on a beach on Koh Tao last month.

The FCO officers' remit is to meet their Thai counterparts and gain a better understanding of the probe into the backpacker murders following claims the two Burmese bar workers accused of the killings have withdrawn their confessions.

A spokesperson said the British team, whose passage to Thailand was brokered by Prime Minister David Cameron after the country's military ruler dropped his objections, may offer additional assistance if is requested by the Thai authorities.

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British backpacker murder suspects 'retract confessions'

Hannah Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, were discovered on a beach on Koh Tao last month.

Two Burmese bar workers accused of killing British backpackers Hannah Witheridge and David Miller have withdrawn their confessions, according to their lawyers.

Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun, both 21, admitted the murders on the Thai island of Koh Tao last month.

But Thailand's National Human Rights Commission said it had found evidence the men had been beaten by police.

Campaigners claim Thai police often blame crimes on Burmese migrant workers and that their investigations cannot be trusted.

UK police have since travelled to the island to probe the circumstances of the deaths further.

Concerns have also been raised in Britain that the two men are innocent "scapegoats".

A petition signed by more than 100,000 people has been handed into Downing Street demanding a new independent investigation into the deaths.

Police to examine DNA and duress claims in Thai case

British detectives travelling to investigate the backpacker murders in Thailand are expected to focus on independent checks of DNA samples central to the case against two Burmese men accused of the crime and their claims to have been mistreated.

Diplomatic sources said Thailand's military ruler accepted the sending of a delegation to investigate the killing of Hannah Witheridge and David Miller when pressed on the issue by David Cameron during their summit meeting.

Obviously it is for the Thai authorities to lead and carry out that judicial process. But it is important that it is fair and transparent and that both of the families can be reassured that it is the murderers that have been brought to justice.

There are two areas we are particularly concerned about. One is the verification of the DNA samples of the suspects, making sure there is further independent verification. And the second is the investigation into allegations of mistreatment of the suspects. What the PM secured this morning was agreement from the Thai PM that we can send some British police investigators to Kho Tao to work with the Royal Thai Police on this.

– Diplomatic source

UK police to travel to Thailand to probe tourist murders

UK police have been cleared to travel to Thailand to investigate the murders of British tourists Hannah Witheridge and David Miller after the country's military ruler dropped his objections.

The agreement came in a face-to-face discussion between Prime Minister David Cameron and military ruler Gen Prayuth Chan-ocha at a summit - the Asia Europe Meeting - in Italy amid international concern about the way the case has been handled by the Thai authorities.

Hannah Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, were discovered on a beach on Koh Tao last month.

Miss Witheridge, 23, from Great Yarmouth, and 24-year-old Mr Miller, from Jersey, were brutally murdered on the holiday island of Koh Tao in September.

Thai authorities have charged two bar workers with the murders of the British backpackers amid allegations that the suspects made confessions under duress.

'Real concern' over Thai probe into murders of Britons

Foreign minister Hugo Swire has said there is "real concern" in the UK over the Thai investigation into the murders of British tourists Hannah Witheridge and David Miller.

Mr Swire summoned the Thai Chargé d’Affaires to the UK, Mr. Nadhavathna Krishnamra, to raise the issue.

Mr Swire stressed that there was a real concern in the UK about how the investigation has been handled by the Thai authorities. He said that it was crucial for the investigation to be conducted in a fair and transparent way.

Mr Swire emphasised how important it was that the UK and Hannah and David’s families received regular updates on the investigation’s progress.

He also noted his concern about the way that the police had engaged with the media on the case and reiterated that the UK police stood ready to assist with the investigation and subsequent legal process.

– foreign office statement
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