Stabbed Newcastle medical students 'unlawfully killed' in Borneo, coroner rules

Gordon of Aidan Brunger (left) and Neil Dalton, two medical students who were stabbed in Borneo
Gordon of Aidan Brunger (left) and Neil Dalton, two medical students who were stabbed in Borneo

Two medical students who died after being stabbed in Borneo were unlawfully killed, a coroner has concluded.

Newcastle University students Aidan Brunger, from Kent, and Neil Dalton, from Ambergate in Derbyshire, were killed in the unprovoked attack in Kuching, Sarawak, on the island of Borneo in August last year.

The country's high court sentenced Zulkipli Abdullah, 23, to death for the murder in March.

An inquest into their deaths at Derby and South Derbyshire Coroner's Court heard evidence from pathologist Michael Biggs who said both 22-year-olds suffered "sharp force injuries".

Mr Brunger suffered a stab wound to the left side of the chest, while Mr Dalton was found to have two stab wounds to the chest and a further two to the back.

Senior coroner for Derby and Derbyshire Robert Hunter said: "Having listened to evidence from Mr Parr (a witness) and the knowledge of criminal proceedings, there's one verdict that I can return in respect of both Aidan Brunger and Neil Dalton and that is unlawful killing.

"There were great hopes for them as doctors. The light that they shine far outweighs the darkness that befell them on August 8. I know you will miss them terribly."