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Last Updated: Monday, 28 August 2006, 23:06 GMT 00:06 UK
JonBenet suspect charges dropped
John Mark Karr on flight from Thailand
Mr Karr had told reporters JonBenet's death was an accident
A man arrested in Thailand and accused of killing US child beauty queen JonBenet Ramsey will not be charged with the murder, prosecutors say.

The case against John Mark Karr was dropped after forensic tests found that his DNA did not match that discovered at the scene of the crime.

Mr Karr, 41, was arrested in Thailand two weeks ago and had been due to appear in court on Monday.

He has said he was there when the girl died, but her death was an accident.

But outside court in Colorado on Monday public defender Seth Temin said in a statement: "The warrant on Mr Karr has been dropped by the district attorney. They're not proceeding with this case.

"We're deeply distressed by the fact that they took this man and dragged him here from Bangkok, Thailand with no forensic evidence confirming the allegations against him, and no independent factors leading to a presumption that he did anything wrong."

However, Mr Karr is still in police custody, following a request that he be taken to California to face child pornography charges dating back to 2001.

'No forensic evidence'

Mr Karr's arrest sparked hopes in the United States that one of the most infamous crimes of recent years might finally be solved.

The BBC's John Kay in California says there has been hysterical media coverage of developments since he was arrested in Bangkok.

He was held on a US warrant which sought his arrest for murder, kidnapping and sexual assault of a child.

But Mr Karr's ex-wife Lara has insisted he was with her in Alabama for the entire Christmas period of 1996, when JonBenet died.

And Mr Karr's family insisted he was innocent, saying he was deluded, possibly as a result of taking drugs.

JonBenet's body was found in the cellar of her family home after her parents had reported her missing on 26 December 1996.

She had been garrotted with a cord and her skull had been fractured.

JonBenet's family, who later moved to Atlanta, Georgia, fought for years to clear their names of persistent accusations that they were involved in the death of their daughter.

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