Malaysia to hold inquest into Franco-Irish teen's death


Kuala Lumpur (AFP)

Malaysia will next month open an inquest into the death of a Franco-Irish teenager whose body was found in the jungle after she disappeared from a resort, her family's lawyer said Friday.

The unclothed body of 15-year-old Nora Quoirin was discovered in August last year after a massive hunt through dense rainforest not far from where she had been on holiday with her London-based family.

Her parents say they believe there was a "criminal element" to her death as the teen had learning difficulties and would not have wandered off alone, but Malaysian police insisted there was no sign of foul play.

The girl disappeared a day after arriving at the Dusun Resort not far from Malaysia's capital Kuala Lumpur, triggering a 10-day hunt involving hundreds of people, helicopters and sniffer dogs.

An autopsy found Nora likely starved and died of internal bleeding after about a week in the jungle, and authorities classified the case as "requiring no further action".

But her family pushed for an inquest, and a coroner has set dates from August 24 and to September 4 for one to take place, lawyer Sankara Nair confirmed to AFP.

Sixty-four witnesses will be called, and the coroner, prosecutors and lawyers will visit the area where her body was found before it gets under way, he said.

Nair said the inquest would be streamed over video-conferencing platform Zoom "for the parents of Nora and other witnesses living abroad to follow the proceedings".