A British teen whose naked body was discovered in a dense Malaysian forest likely died after she got lost, a Malaysian coroner ruled Monday.
Coroner Maimoonah Aid determined that 15-year-old Nora Anne Quoirin died of misadventure — meaning that no one else was involved in her death in the southern Negeri Sembilan state on Aug. 4, 2019.
“It is more probable than not that she died by misadventure, i.e. that she had gone out of the (cottage) on her own and subsequently got lost in the abandoned palm oil plantation,” Maimoonah said.
Nora had gone missing from her family’s cottage a day after they arrived for vacation.
Police believe that she climbed out of the cottage window on her own, insisting there was no evidence of foul play.
But her parents said they don’t believe she could have gone off on her own since she had mental and physical disabilities.
Her naked body was discovered on Aug. 13 just over a mile from the resort, though she had wandered away only wearing her underwear.
Malaysian authorities at the time said that she died of intestinal bleeding due to starvation and stress — which was confirmed by a British pathologist, Nathaniel Cary, who had performed a second autopsy in the United Kingdom.
But he couldn’t say for certain whether the teen had been sexually assaulted since she was severely decomposed when she was discovered.
Cary was among those who testified in court proceedings this summer via video conference to determine her cause of death.
But Maimoonah on Monday said while the teen’s lack of clothing may have pointed to her being a victim of a sexual assault, an extensive autopsy was unable to back this up.
No evidence suggested that there was a struggle or that she was smothered, either.
The coroner also pointed out that there was no suspicious activity prior to the teen’s disappearance, no ransom request, or signs that someone broke into the family’s cottage.
The teen’s parents, who appeared online for the verdict from their home in London, said in a statement that they were “utterly disappointed.”
They said they believed the coroner should have ruled that it was an open verdict — which would have meant that foul play was possible but not enough proof.
“We still believe this is the only appropriate verdict because, throughout the testimonies presented in this case, layers of (professional) evidence have confirmed what we always believed — that Nora was abducted,” they said.
“Once again, we see that justice struggles to support the most vulnerable in society, only engaging with special needs at a surface level,” they added.
With Post Wires