Nora Quoirin could not have reached the ravine where her body was discovered by herself, a member of the Malaysian search team said last night.
The volunteer said the barefoot 15-year-old, who had suffered physical and mental disabilities since birth, would have found it impossible to cross the arduous jungle terrain.
This comes as Nora’s family have called for a second postmortem to take place outside of Malaysia. Meabh, 45, and Sebastien, 47, want to be ensure no vital evidence has been missed about the 15-year-old’s death.
Displaying intimate knowledge of the area surrounding the remote Lata Berembun waterfall where Nora’s naked body was found on Tuesday, the volunteer described treacherous gradients and dense vegetation surrounding the scene.
His testimony generates yet more doubts over the police theory that Nora reached the site alone after wandering off from her family’s holiday chalet in the dead of night.
Nora Quoirin (pictured) could not have reached the ravine where her naked body was found alone, a member of the Malaysian search team claimed last night
The volunteer said the 15-year-old would have found it ‘impossible’ to navigate dense vegetation on a 20 to 40 per cent gradient and cross two deep streams. (Pictured: Parents Meabh and Sebastien Quoirin searching for their daughter in Seremban on August 10 in a photo released by Royal Malaysia Police)
Nora’s French grandfather has also said it was ‘absurd’ to suggest that the vulnerable teenager had reached the waterfall alone. (Pictured: Search team hunts for the missing 15-year-old)
‘Nora couldn’t have got there by herself,’ the volunteer said.
‘I struggled to walk. The path is difficult even for an able-bodied person.
‘Dense vegetation snags your feet. The average gradient of the slopes where Nora was found range from 20 to 40 per cent. You have to cross two reasonably deep streams to reach the area where she was found.
‘The terrain by the stream is very slippery. The roots and rocks are wet. My boots were destroyed by the end and Nora was barefoot. I can’t imagine how she could have walked to the place where she was found.’
Nora’s French grandfather said on Wednesday that it was ‘absurd’ to suggest the vulnerable teenager had reached the waterfall by herself.
Speaking to The Mirror,about the possibility of a second postmortem, a source said: ‘They are deliberating. They need to decide whether they would ask for it to be done in Malaysia or elsewhere.’
It has been suggested that the second autopsy would be carried out either in the UK or in France where investigations are still ongoing.
However, concerns have been raised to the admissibility of any evidence that may be found, if discovered outside of Malaysia.
Sylvain Quoirin, the mayor of the village of Venizy, north-central France, added: ‘It is completely unthinkable that she should have gone out on her own at night. You can completely exclude that possibility.’
Sylvain Quoirin, Nora’s grandfather, believes someone put Nora’s body there ‘to get rid of her’, adding: ‘She wasn’t there yet [during previous searches]. Someone put her there’
Nora Quiorin, the 15-year-old schoolgirl found dead in the Malaysian jungle Tuesday, survived for a week before dying of intestinal damage caused by starvation, police have said
The naked body of Nora, who had serious learning difficulties, was found by a hiker near a waterfall on Tuesday – ten days after she went missing
Nora had a smaller than average brain and struggled to act independently, having been born with Patau’s syndrome
Nora had a smaller than average brain and struggled to act independently, having been born with Patau’s syndrome, or holoprosencephaly.
The condition left her struggling to complete everyday tasks and with limited speech, walking ability and co-ordination.
Last night, Malaysian police were said to be re-examining reports that a villager saw a ‘white girl’ swimming in the area on the day Nora disappeared.
The witness was riding a motorbike when he spotted the girl at 7pm on Sunday, August 4.
Yesterday Nora’s heartbroken parents said they were ‘struggling to understand the events of the last ten days’ as they prepared to bring her body home to Britain.
After meeting Malaysia’s deputy prime minister, Meabh and Sebastien Quoirin said: ‘Our beautiful, innocent girl died in extremely complex circumstances and we are hoping that soon we will have more answers to our many questions.’ Detectives say Nora starved to death after a week in the jungle alone, but from the day she went missing, her family expressed fears she could have been abducted.
The investigation was revealed as parents Sebastien and Meabh said they are struggling to accept the Malaysian police’s version of events, in which their daughter wandered off alone. (Pictured: Nora’s parents speaking at a news conference in Malaysia on August 12)
The 15-year-old’s body was discovered near this jungle waterfall after a 10-day search involving hundreds of police and volunteers, helicopters and sniffer dogs
Emergency services and rescue workers arrive at the Dusun Resort, where Nora went missing from her family’s apartment on August 4
The ravine where she was found – which is only 1.6 miles from the lodge where her family was staying – was repeatedly searched by rescue teams during the first seven days of her disappearance.
Police have been unable to adequately explain why she was missed. It also remains unexplained why she was not wearing the underwear she had on when she was last seen by her parents at bedtime on August 3.
A former senior police officer advising the family has appealed for authorities to retain an ‘open mind’ about the cause of death.
Jim Gamble said: ‘The family themselves have always had a question mark of whether there was any criminal activity and I think everyone should retain an open mind.
‘We know why Nora died, in simple terms from starvation, we know where she ended up, but we don’t necessarily know how she got there.’
‘I am not trying to pour fuel on the speculative fire but all of those things need to be considered.’
British and French police asked to stay at the resort (pictured) to test whether an intruder could have taken the teenager away unnoticed. They are yet to report their findings
Nora went missing from her bedroom on August 4 while on a family holiday at a nature resort in Seremban, Malaysia. Pictured is a map of the resort from where she disappeared
A Malaysian police chief has said officers had uncovered no evidence of abduction or kidnapping ‘for the time being’, but Mr Gamble said it could not be ruled out.
He added that the Quoirin family needed to be given ‘the time and the space to grieve with dignity’ as they ‘bring this very, very special child home’. The family said Nora will be buried ‘close to her loving families in France and Ireland’.
They also thanked Malaysian authorities and search parties for their efforts.
Nora, from south London, had travelled to the Dunsun resort – about 40 miles south of Kuala Lumpur – on August 3 with her parents, sister Innes, 12, and brother Maurice, eight.
After going to sleep with her siblings in an upstairs bedroom, she was discovered missing by her French father shortly after 8am the next day.