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06th Mar 2017

A young tourist (23) has vanished from the Thai paradise dubbed ‘Death Island’

Katie Mythen-Lynch

A Russian tourist has disappeared from a Thai island where two young backpackers were brutally murdered in 2014.

According to the Samui Times, Valentina Novozhyonova checked into the Koh Tao hostel on February 11th.

She was due to leave on the 16th, but when she did not return her room key, staff discovered her passport, phone and her camera, as well as her other belongings in her bedroom.

Ms. Novozhyonova, who is described as 170cm tall, with light brown hair and a ‘V’ tattooed on her left wrist, is said to have visited the island to try free diving.

Police are looking into the possibility she may have gone diving alone and investigators are said to be searching the beaches for her blue towel.

The idyllic diver’s paradise, which has no airport and is reached by high speed catamaran and ferry, was dubbed ‘Death Island’ following the horrific slaying of British backpackers Hannah Witheridge and David Miller.

Having left a nearby beach bar together in the early hours of the morning on September 15, 2014, Witheridge was raped and murdered and Miller was beaten to death. Two Burmese migrant workers, Zaw Lin and Wai Phyo, from Myanmar, were later charged with the murders.

Speaking to the Bangkok Post, Surat Thani police chief Pol Maj Gen Apichart Boonsriroj said:

“Police are checking local surveillance camera footage especially from 6pm of Feb 15. We have not seen the person anywhere. So we cannot confirm whether she is still alive or not. We cannot conclude a cause of the disappearance until we have a clue.”