Coroner records ‘accidental death’ in inquest into death of Moroccan man
Coroner Charles Pitto has highlighted the dangers involved with illegal immigration at the close of an inquest into the death of a 23-year old Moroccan man who was found floating in the sea off Europa Point.
El-Mehdi Akhrif is believed to have fallen into the sea from a small vessel while attempting to enter Spain. Mr Pitto returned a verdict of accidental death following an inquest on Monday.
Mr Akhrif’s body was found floating in the sea some 1.5 nautical miles off Europa Point last August.
Search and rescue attempts by the Spanish authorities which involved use of a police helicopter and other maritime units had proved unsuccessful.
On August 28, the Gibraltar Port Authority alerted the Royal Gibraltar Police marine crew after spotting a body floating in the sea off Europa Point.
Mr Akhrif’s body was repatriated and returned to his family in Morocco after a complex identification process following inquiries with Interpol which involved fingerprint analysis and DNA.
The Moroccan authorities also assisted the RGP.
During the inquest Mr Pitto highlighted the dangers involved with illegal immigration and the tragedy surrounding this case, with Mr Akhrif having died just days after his 23rd birthday.