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Last Updated: Tuesday, 19 April, 2005, 17:36 GMT 18:36 UK
Asylum seeker's gun death suicide
A gay asylum seeker who shot himself between the eyes with an airgun had "an obvious motive" to commit suicide, the East Sussex coroner has said.

Hussein Nasseri, 26, killed himself while in his car at a children's playground in Eastbourne last June.

He died days after hearing his second appeal against a Home Office decision to refuse him asylum had failed and that he was to be deported.

He said he would be executed if he returned to Iran because he was gay.

Mr Nasseri's friend, Nader Ashkani, 30, who is also from Iran, said: "I saw him two weeks before he died.

"He was very upset. He said he wanted to kill himself. He said he had bought a gun to kill himself."

Escaped persecution

The hearing heard he had used an airgun that had been illegally modified to fire .22 calibre bullets.

His body was found in the car park of Fort Fun children's playground in Royal Parade, slumped at the wheel of his red Rover car.

Mr Nasseri had entered the UK in March 2000 and told East Sussex County Council that he had been persecuted in his home city of Tehran for being homosexual.

He said he had been jailed for being gay but had escaped custody and claimed he would be put to death if he returned to Iran.

Coroner Alan Craze returned a verdict of suicide at the hearing on Tuesday and said he was satisfied there had been no third party involved in the death, despite claims that Mr Nasseri had been murdered by drug dealers.

Mr Craze said there was no evidence to prove that Mr Nasseri had been involved in drugs or that he had been murdered.

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