Chiangrai Times – An American tourist who died in mysterious circumstances in Vietnam alongside her Canadian travelling companion was not poisoned, state-run media reported Tuesday.
American Karin Joy Bowerman, 27, and Canadian Cathy Huynh, 26, died last month at a hospital in southern Nha Trang province. An autopsy was carried out on Bowerman but the results were not made public.
However a Nha Trang city police leader told Tuoi Tre newspaper: “She died from breathing failure, circulatory collapse due to brain edema (swelling caused by fluid).
“No toxic traces have been found in her blood and gastric fluids.”
As no poison was detected in the samples taken, there are no grounds for a criminal investigation in the case, the policeman said, according to the newspaper, which published the report on its website Tuesday.
Bowerman died on July 30 after suffering “a mysterious illness” and respiratory failure, while Huynh died two days later after developing similar symptoms and suffering a cardiac arrest, Tuoi Tre reported at the time.
The pair, who had shared a room in a guesthouse on Nguyen Thien Thuat street in Nha Trang – a popular backpacker area in the seaside resort – might have “drunk too much wine” which led to their deaths, a police investigator said at the time.
The family of Huynh, a Canadian of Vietnamese descent, disputed the officer’s account, claiming she had died after receiving insufficient medical care.
Before their trip to Vietnam, the two women had both taught English at a university in South Korea.
In June two Canadian sisters were found dead in their hotel room on a popular resort island in Thailand, showing signs of having suffered an extreme toxic reaction. The exact cause of their deaths remains unknown.