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British woman killed in Thailand speedboat accident 'was on honeymoon'

Published 28/05/2016

The scene after the fatal speedboat accident in Thailand (Nalinee Siriked/PA)
The scene after the fatal speedboat accident in Thailand (Nalinee Siriked/PA)

A British woman killed in an horrific speedboat accident in Thailand was on her honeymoon, according to reports.

Monica O'Connor, 28, and at least two other people died when a huge wave capsized their boat off the coast of the island of Koh Samui on Thursday.

A search operation has resumed for a missing British man - 46-year-old Jason Parnell - who was celebrating his first wedding anniversary with wife Puja when the crash happened.

A spokesman for Koh Samui Tourist Police said: "We will not finish until we find him."

Mrs Parnell and Mrs O'Connor's husband Tim are both believed to have escaped the crash unharmed.

The Angthong Discovery Tour vessel was carrying 32 tourists and four crew members when it overturned after hitting rough waters and strong winds.

A German man and a woman from Hong Kong were also among the dead, Koh Samui authorities said.

The boat's captain, Sanan Seekakiaw, was taken into police custody following the crash and faces a possible charge of reckless endangerment causing death, which comes with a prison sentence of up to 10 years.

Mr Seekakiaw said he had asked all tourists to wear a life vest but that some had taken them off during the journey.

Travel agent Amm Pontfuk, who has worked with Angthong Discovery for a number of years, said the boat had not left shore in the days preceding the accident due to rough conditions.

She told the Press Association: "This company is the number one for my travel agency, I have sent the manager customers for years, I have known him a long time.

"He is very concerned and professional, normally in bad weather he doesn't go out - he did not go out for three days already - and yesterday he thought the weather was OK and that was why he went out.

"The wind blew very, very strong and it made the boat go under the waves and flip."

The Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: "We are supporting the family of a British woman who has sadly died following a boat accident near Koh Samui, Thailand.

"We are also supporting the family of a British man who is missing following the same incident. We remain in contact with local authorities in Thailand for further information."

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