'Train plunge' victim was Albanian
Published 17/10/2011 | 20:52
An Albanian man who was refused entry to the UK died in a fall from a high-speed Eurostar train as he was leaving the country.
The 22-year-old was exiting Britain voluntarily when he fell from the 5.04pm London St Pancras to Brussels service in Cheriton, Kent, on Monday around 5.50pm, British Transport Police (BTP) said.
The incident, which is being treated as "non-suspicious", caused long delays to the Eurostar service as police launched an investigation.
A British Transport Police spokesman said the man was declared dead at the scene and that officers were trying to "establish the full circumstances" leading to his death.
He added: "At this stage, it is believed the deceased is a 22-year-old Albanian national who had entered the UK from Brussels and was returning voluntarily after being refused entry."
The man's body was taken to William Harvey Hospital in Ashford, Kent, and Eurostar services were temporarily suspended before resuming but with delays.
Richard Ashworth, MEP for South East England and Conservative spokesman on agriculture and rural affairs, was one of the passengers on the train.
He said: "The understanding was that an illegal migrant being deported somehow got off it and was killed, so they stopped for police to be brought on. It defies logic, how you get a door open on a train at high speed."
Mr Ashworth, who got back into London around 10.30pm and hopes to travel to Brussels later instead, said Eurostar's communication with passengers "leaves a lot to be desired".
He said there had been regular, but "pointless" announcements for the three hours they were stuck on the train, and passengers were relying on Twitter and social networking to find out what had happened.