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Richard Morris: Cause of diplomat's death 'not yet known'

image copyrightHampshire Constabulary/PA
image captionRichard Morris was appointed British High Commissioner to Fiji before his disappearance

Initial investigations have yet to establish how a diplomat whose body was found in a forest months after going missing died, an inquest has heard.

Richard Morris was last seen running in Alton, Hampshire, on 6 May.

The cause of death following a post-mortem examination on the 52-year-old's body has been recorded as "unascertained", senior coroner Christopher Wilkinson said.

Mr Morris was the UK ambassador to Nepal for four years until 2019.

During the four-minute remote hearing, Mr Wilkinson confirmed Mr Morris, who lived in Bentley and was originally from Worcestershire, was found dead by a member of the public at Alice Holt Forest in Hampshire on 31 August.

Mr Wilkinson said consultant forensic pathologist Dr Russell Delaney carried out the initial examination on the body, adding: "The nature of his death is at this stage unascertained."

'Not suspicious'

The inquest was adjourned until June 2021 for further evidence to be gathered.

A family statement released at the time of his death described the father of three as "funny, kind and smart".

Mr Morris was the ambassador to Nepal between 2015 and November 2019 and accompanied the Duke of Sussex during his tour of the country in 2016.

Before that he was head of the Pacific department in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and had held senior diplomatic posts including in Australia and Mexico during nearly 30 years' service.

Before his disappearance he was appointed British High Commissioner to Fiji.

At the time of the discovery of his body, police said they were not treating the death as suspicious.

Related Topics

  • Alton
  • Bentley