Edinburgh, Fife & East Scotland

Post-mortem casts doubt over 'natural' death in Israel

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Media captionHotel worker Julie, 38, from Kinross, collapsed and died on 27 November 2015

The family of a woman who died in Israel have said a post-mortem report into her death casts doubt over claims she died of natural causes.

Authorities in the tourist town of Eilat said Julie Pearson died after collapsing in a guest house.

But her family believe she was beaten to death by a former boyfriend.

The hotel worker, from Kinross, collapsed and died on 27 November last year after visiting the Dolphin guest house in Eilat.

She had moved to the town in September 2014 as she had family connections there.

The police report claimed that Miss Pearson's death was from natural causes.

Beaten up

However, it also acknowledged that she appeared to have been beaten by her ex-boyfriend the day before she died.

Her family in Scotland have been demanding answers as they believe the authorities did not carry out a thorough investigation at the time.

Image caption Miss Pearson's aunt Deborah Pearson said she wants the case re-examined

It has taken the family eight months to obtain a post-mortem report.

It was released to them last week in Hebrew, and it does not rule out the possibility that the beating Miss Pearson received played a role in her death.

Although the family has not had an official translation of the report, their Israeli lawyer has read it. He told them the findings suggest there could be doubts over the cause of Miss Pearson's death.

'I want justice'

Her aunt, Deborah Pearson, who lives in Blackburn in West Lothian, said she wanted the case re-examined and Miss Pearson's former partner investigated.

Mrs Pearson said: "I've spoken to the doctor at the Forensic Institute in Israel and he told me there is a possibility that the beatings contributed to her death so when it is fully translated [the report] then I do want it to go back to court and I want this man punished for what he has done.

"I believe that he is responsible and I want justice for Julie and I won't stop until I get justice for Julie."

Hannah Bardell, MP for Livingston, said: "It always makes me sad when we have cases such as these when someone has been killed or died in unknown circumstances and we have to get so heavily involved.

"It should be the case that the systems and processes are in place to support a family but unfortunately it doesn't appear in this case that they have been so we have to keep fighting to get justice for Julie."

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