Related Topics

  • Death of Nora Quoirin

image copyrightFamily handoutimage captionNóra Quoirin went missing the day after she and her family arrived in Malaysia

A Malaysian judge has overturned an inquest verdict of misadventure in the death of 15-year-old Nóra Quoirin, changing it to an open ruling.

Nóra, from south-west London, was discovered dead in the jungle nine days after she went missing from an eco-resort in Malaysia in August 2019.

The change in verdict suggests there are still questions to be answered in the case, and leaves open the possibility of criminal involvement.

Her family believe she was abducted.

  • The girl who vanished into a Malaysian jungle
  • Nóra's body 'placed in the jungle', mother says

Overturning the original ruling, High Court Judge Azizul Adnan said there was "no creditable evidence to support any other verdict".

"I am of the view the verdict of misadventure ought to be vacated in the interests of justice and substituted as an open verdict," he said.

The initial verdict returned in January had indicated Nóra's death was accidental.

Nóra was born with holoprosencephaly, a disorder which affects brain development.

She and her family had travelled to the Dusun resort in Malaysia on holiday but she disappeared from her room the day after they arrived on 3 August 2019.

Her body was later found in the jungle about 1.6 miles (2.5km) away.

A post-mortem examination found Nóra had died three days before her body was found, due to gastrointestinal bleeding from hunger and stress endured over a prolonged period.

image copyrightAFPimage captionNearly 250 officers took part in the search for Nóra

When making the original inquest ruling, the coroner had said there was nobody else involved in Nóra's death.

However, her parents dismissed claims that their daughter could walk off into the jungle alone at night and challenged the ruling.

Her mother Meabh Quoirin, who was from Belfast, previously told the BBC she believed her daughter's body was placed by somebody in the spot where she was found, adding that there were "so many questions… left unanswered".

image copyrightRoyal Malaysia Policeimage captionMaebh and Sebastien Quoirin, seen here during the search, had called for the inquest verdict to be overturned

Overturning the verdict, the High Court judge said it was "not probable" Nóra would have left her chalet alone at night, nor that she could "have navigated by herself the challenging terrain in and around the location where she was eventually found".

He added she was a "shy and retiring child who was uncurious and unadventurous, and who was strongly attached emotionally to her parents", and it was "unlikely" she would go out on her own.

Following his ruling, Judge Adnan told the family: "We have not been able to assist you in finding the answers that you may have been seeking, but I hope that these proceedings would have assisted you in some way on the long road towards healing".