Men accused of killing Hemsby student Hannah Witheridge could have new DNA tests
- Credit: PA
Two men accused of killing two British tourists in Thailand, including Hemsby student Hannah Witheridge, have been offered new DNA tests after retracting their confessions.
University of East Anglia graduate Miss Witheridge, 23, and Jersey backpacker David Miller, 24, were killed on the island of Koh Tao on September 15. The investigation into their deaths has been critised by some and last Tuesday, after prime minister David Cameron met with Thai prime minister Prayut Chan-o-cha, British police flew to Thailand to assist Royal Thai Police.
Two Burmese bar workers reportedly confessed to the murders, but lawyers later said they had withdrawn their admissions.
At a weekly cabinet meeting reported by the Bangkok Post, Mr Chan-o-cha today said police will allow the Zaw Lin and Win Zaw Htun, both 21, to have another DNA test.
He said: 'We will allow the suspects to fight the case, however they want.
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'We have no problem conducting another DNA tests if (sceptics) think the released (DNA) results were not correct or not fair.'
The suspects were charged with three offences - conspiracy to murder, conspiracy to rape, and robbery.
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But later reports, denied by the Thai police, suggested a Burmese embassy official had formally retracted the confessions amid allegations that the pair were tortured. Thailand's National Human Rights Commission said it had found evidence that the two suspects were physically abused by the police.
Concerns have also been raised in the UK that the two men are innocent 'scapegoats'.
A petition signed by more than 100,000 people has been handed in to 10 Downing Street demanding a new, independent investigation into the deaths.