السبت , يونيو 6 2020

Borneo man guilty of Britons' murder

Neil Dalton, left, and Aidan Brunger

Neil Dalton, left, and Aidan Brunger were in the last few days of a six-week medical placement

A Malaysian court has found a local man guilty of murdering two British medical students in Borneo.

Newcastle University students Aidan Brunger and Neil Dalton, both 22, were stabbed in a bar in Kuching, Sarawak, in August 2014.

Fishmonger Zulkipli Abdullah, 24, had denied their murder, but admitted being involved in a street fight with them along with two other men.

The penalty for murder in Malaysia is a mandatory sentence of death by hanging.

In a joint statement, the victims’ parents, Phil and Jan Dalton and Paul Brunger and Sue Hidson, paid tribute to their sons, and spoke of the devastation their deaths had caused.

“They were two exceptional young men with such promise – kind, funny and full of life. Their deaths have left their families and many good friends utterly devastated,” it read.

“Our sons would soon have qualified as doctors. Their unprovoked and senseless murders as they were walking home after a night out with other medical students mean that Aidan and Neil will never have the chance to spend their lives caring for and helping others.

“They would have given so much to the world. We are so very proud of both of them and in what they achieved in their all too short lives.

“Although we are pleased that the man responsible for their murders has been held accountable, the guilty verdict does not bring our sons back.”

Zulkipli Abdullah

Zulkipli Abdullah admitted he had been in a fight with the students

Mr Dalton, from Ambergate, Derbyshire, and Mr Brunger, from Hempstead, Kent, had almost completed a work placement at a hospital in Kuching.

They were found sprawled in the road by cafe workers in the Jalan Padungan area of Kuching in the early hours of 6 August last year.

The trial heard Abdullah admitting being involved in a fight with the two students and punched one of them.

But he denied stabbing them or carrying a knife.

The BBC’s Jennifer Pak said the judge found the key witnesses credible.

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Jennifer Pak, BBC News, Kuching

Aidan Brunger’s father was in court. He wore a smart black suit and read a statement in a clear voice.

He said the loss of Aidan was “devastating” for his family. He described Aidan as a kind, considerate and generous person, an exceptional young man who had a promising career in medicine.

He said the murders were senseless and he was pleased with the guilty verdict

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