Met police team to travel to Thailand and help investigate Hannah Witheridge’s murder

Hannah Witheridge and David Miller.

Hannah Witheridge and David Miller. - Credit: PA

British police officers travelling to Thailand following the brutal murder of Norfolk student Hannah Witheridge will be experts in their field, said the Met.

It will not be Norfolk-based officers flying to Asia to help with the ongoing investigation, but officers from the homicide and major crime unit of London's Metropolitan force.

A spokesman for the Met told the EDP that a carefully selected team will be chosen for their indivudual expertise and experience.

Miss Witheridge, of Hemsby, and backpacker David Miller, of Jersey, were killed on the holiday island of Koh Tao on September 15.

British detectives 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 they have been mistreated.

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A spokesman for the Met said British officers have not yet travelled to Thailand.

She said: 'No-one has been deployed yet.

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'In terms of how many and who we send out there, that has not been decided yet but they will be from the homicide and major crime command.'

She added that Met officers will not 'take over' the investigation or lead it, but work alongside Thai officers.

'It's still very much their investigation so we'll be going out there to work with them.'

In a statement confirming Met officers would work alongside the Royal Thai Police, the London force said: 'We are currently liaising with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Home Office and the police in Jersey and Norfolk in order to assess the most appropriate forms of action we can undertake to achieve the aims of the deployment.

'The police in Norfolk and Jersey are still the forces that lead on supporting the Witheridge and Miller families and have Family Liaison Officers deployed with them.'

It was confirmed that British officers would go to Thailand after the country's military ruler dropped objections to UK help. The agreement came after prime minister David Cameron had a face-to-face discussion with Thailand's military ruler General Prayuth Chan-ocha about the controversy surrounding the case.

Miss Witheridge's family has said they 'hope the right people are brought to justice'.

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