KOH TAO – Three male migrant workers have been arrested following the double murder of two British backpackers in Thailand.
David Miller, 24, from Jersey, and Hannah Witheridge, aged 23, from Great Yarmouth, Norfolk, were discovered bludgeoned to death on a beach in Koh Tao yesterday.
A bloodstained hoe, believed to be the murder weapon, was found nearby.
The three men, said to be from Myanmar, were arrested after police seized a pair of blood-stained jeans and an iPhone from their rooms.
CCTV footage released today shows the two victims walking hand-in-hand shortly before their murder on the beach of the idyllic island.
Another still from the CCTV footage showed a man, believed to be Asian, who was said to be considered a prime suspect in the case.
Police added that they were following a number of leads in the case.
Yesterday, police were trying to trace one of Mr Miller’s friends who left the island shortly after the killing, but said they were not treating him as a suspect.
‘We are focusing on migrant workers because of the surrounding witnesses and evidence, including the video footage,’ Major General Kiattipong Khawsamang said.
Their bodies were found on a rocky section of the shore around 100 yards from the scene of a beach party.
Police said they had sustained horrific injuries – the man was chopped in the back and on the side of his head, while the woman was chopped in her face.
Tributes to the pair were paid on social media sites, with one Twitter user saying he felt ‘sick and upset’ after hearing of the death of a school friend.
‘We are sweeping hotels, bars, businesses and residences of migrant workers on the beach to find the suspect.’
It is not thought the victims were a couple, but that they had met recently on the island
On Monday night, about 100 local residents gathered on Sairee Beach for a candlelit vigil and said prayers for the young British couple close to the spot where their bodies were found.