Nóra Quoirin: Search group waited hours after finding body

Nóra Quoirin: Search group waited hours after finding body

A volunteer who found the body of a London schoolgirl who disappeared from a Malaysian jungle resort said he had to wait “hours” for authorities to arrive, an inquest has heard.

Nóra Quoirin was “found on a rock” last August by Chong Yue Fatt after a huge search of dense rainforest.

Her family have always insisted Nóra would not wander off alone.

The inquest which started two months ago has resumed after a witness came into contact with a Covid-19 patient.

Nóra’s family were staying in Sora House in Dusun eco-resort near Seremban, about 40 miles (65km) south of Kuala Lumpur, when Nóra, who was born with holoprosencephaly, a disorder which affects brain development, was first reported missing a day after they arrived on 3 August.

The 15-year-old’s body was found on 13 August by the group of civilian volunteers in a palm-oil plantation about 1.5 miles from the holiday home.

Mr Chong told the court in Seremban that the hiking group had trekked in the Pantai area many times before, especially Mount Berembun, but not in the specific area that the body was found.

The civilian search group had more than 20 people, all civilians and with no recognised guide but it was led by Chan Kai Sian who is scheduled to give evidence on Thursday.

He said Mr Chan had been involved in previous searches and Mr Chong joined on 13 August and the volunteer group were split into pairs.

“I saw the body,” Mr Chong told the court adding that it was 50m (164ft) away from a shed.

“When I found the body, the place where I shouted, that’s where I remained standing.

“We all tried to call by phone but could not get any calls out. And we asked a Malaysian Indian who knows the area very well, and he was the one who told his father to call the fire department, because there’s no (phone) line.”

Mr Chong said said it felt like “one or two hours” before any assistance arrived.

He added: “We told all group members not to come close to the body, because (we were) afraid we would tamper any evidence. We just waited until assistance arrived.”

The inquest continues.

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