Hampshire & Isle of Wight

Susan Howarth 'tortured and killed' in South Africa

Susan Howarth Image copyright Celeste Combrink TLU SA
Image caption Susan Howarth (pictured) who was an avid horse and dog lover according to friends, was killed after being tortured in her home

A British woman has died after she and her husband were tortured at their home in South Africa, according to reports.

Susan Howarth, 64, and Robert Lynn, 66, were shot at and tied up by masked raiders on their farm in Dullstroom, in Mpumalanga province.

Ms Howarth, originally from Southsea, Hampshire, died after the ordeal, on Sunday 19 February, local reports said.

After being tortured, the couple were put in the back of a pick-up truck and left for dead in a ditch.

'Lying in a ditch'

Mr Lynn, reportedly a former electrical engineer, was tortured with a blowtorch and knives.

According to local newspaper the Middelburg Observer, he returned home after the death of his wife, known by locals as the "English girl", on Tuesday.

Mr Lynn told the paper he woke at about 03:00 local time to the sound of his dogs barking and breaking glass.

Image copyright Celeste Combrink TLU SA
Image caption Mr Lynn (pictured) has now returned home and told the Observer his wife was "a great girl"

The gang shot at the couple in their bedroom and demanded money. He said he gave them what he had but they continued to torture him.

After being dumped in a field, Mr Lynn told the Observer: "I crossed the road, crawling most of the way. On the other side I saw Susan, lying in a ditch. Her hands tied behind her back. She was bleeding from her head."

Mr Lynn flagged down a car and the pair were taken to Midmed Hospital.

Image copyright Middelburg Observer Caxton CTP
Image caption Floral tributes were left for Susan Howarth at her local church on Wednesday

A Foreign and Commonwealth Office spokesman said: "Our thoughts are with them at this difficult time. We are in contact with the local authorities."

Ms Howarth reportedly moved to Dullstroom in 1996 to set up a stables business. Her ashes will be flown to Southsea to be buried with her parents.

The Middleburg Observer reported five people had been arrested in connection with the attack and murder.

Image copyright Middelburg Observer Caxton CTP
Image caption People gathered at the local church to pay tribute to Susan Howarth on Wednesday

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