Borneo stab death students: Inquest opens in UK

  • 18 August 2014
  • From the section England
Media captionNeil Dalton, left, and Aidan Brunger were in the last days of their hospital placement

An inquest into the deaths of two British medical students stabbed in Borneo has opened.

Neil Dalton, from Ambergate in Derbyshire, and Aidan Brunger, from Kent, died when they were in the last week of work placements at a hospital.

Derby and South Derbyshire Coroner's Court heard both 22-year-olds were stabbed following an incident at a cafe or bistro in Kuching on 6 August.

The inquest was adjourned to 30 September.

The students' bodies were returned to the UK last week and formally identified by the men's fathers.

The case is being investigated by officers in Malaysia, assisted by Derbyshire Police.

Four local men have admitted the killings, according to Malaysian police.

Image copyright Family Handout
Image caption Mr Brunger was on a placement at Sarawak General Hospital

A fifth man, aged 55, has also been arrested in connection with the killings.

'Stabbed and killed'

During the brief hearing, Det Con Sarah Fraser of Derbyshire Police confirmed details of how the men died.

She said: "An incident happened in a bistro or cafe, following which Neil and Aidan were both stabbed and killed.

"We are told they died on 6 August 2014, on Abel Road, Kuching, at 4.15am, although inquiries are still ongoing."

Adjourning the inquest, deputy coroner Louise Pinder said: "The investigation, both locally and abroad, continues and by 30 September we'll hopefully have further information and some decisions can be made."

Both students have been awarded honorary degrees by their university.

Their families were not at the inquest opening.

However, relatives of Mr Brunger previously paid tribute to a "wonderful" young man, saying the murder had "left a massive hole" in their lives.

The family of Mr Dalton spoke of their disbelief and paid tribute to the "caring, thoughtful and witty young man".

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