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Last Updated: Sunday, 21 October 2007, 16:27 GMT 17:27 UK
Teenagers held over sailor death
Falcon Hotel
The men were drinking in the Falcon Hotel before they were attacked
Three teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of murder after a sailor died in a "completely unprovoked attack".

A 32-year-old Indian sailor had been in the Falcon Hotel in Fawley, Hampshire, with a colleague and was returning to the cargo ship they worked on.

They were assaulted by a group of about 20 teenagers as they left the hotel and headed along Church Lane.

The man, from Goa, died shortly after the fight was broken up. A 14-year-old and two 17-year-olds were arrested.

The men had just arrived at the dock, on Southampton Water, the day before and were working on The Garonne cargo ship, a police spokeswoman said.

We do not think all the youths took part in the altercation
Hampshire police spokeswoman

They were heading back to the ship when they were attacked.

"The gang of youths, aged between 13 and 18, numbered about 20 and there was an altercation between them and the men after they left the Falcon Hotel after a night out," she said.

"This carried on into Church Lane.

"At the moment it looks like a completely unprovoked attack.

"We do not think all the youths took part in the altercation but it is very early in the investigation."

Became separated

A passer-by took the injured man to dock gate two at the end of Marsh Lane, where he collapsed and died.

A post-mortem examination proved inconclusive and further tests will be carried out, the spokeswoman said.

Detectives were also trying to establish how the dead man's colleague, aged 29, managed to get back to the dock gate, as it appears the pair were parted during the assault.

Officers are also looking at CCTV footage from the night and are conducting house-to-house inquiries.

Det Supt Alan Betts said: "I would like to appeal to anyone who witnessed the incident outside The Falcon Hotel on Saturday night to come forward.

"I would also like to speak to anyone who was in the square or the Church Lane area between 9pm and 10pm last night.

"If you were part of the group who were involved in the altercation, I would urge you to come forward and speak to the police."

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