Speaking at a press conference, officers from the Phi Phi Police acknowledged that they had been unable to determine beyond doubt the exact cause of the incident, but explained that the findings were the result of a post-mortem examination that found no other injuries that indicated that the man, 50-year-old Markus Steinbach, had been involved in any fight or struggle.
The body of Mr Steinbach was found face down “in a sandy crevice” near the sea gypsy cemetery last Tuesday night (Aug 28).
The post-mortem, conducted by Forensic Police in Surat Thani, concluded Mr Steinbach had bruises on his head above the left eye, but had not suffered any further injuries, including to his brain, windpipe or torso.
He did have abrasion around his ankles that investigators believe were sustained by walking on the rocks barefoot.
However, the post-mortem did confirm the cause of death as drwoning.
Police yesterday noted that valuables were found still on his person when his body was discovered, leading them to believe that Mr Steinbach was not attacked in a robbery.
With no other information leading officers to believe Mr Steinbach was attacked for any other motive, in light of the post-mortem findings, police believe his death was accidental.
Arrangements are being made to repatriate Mr Steinbach’s body home, police said.