Page last updated at 19:42 GMT, Tuesday, 15 July 2008 20:42 UK

Parents 'lacked help over death'

Laura Hill
Laura Hill was found dead last October while travelling in Argentina

The death of a Sussex woman who was found dead in Argentina has been raised in Parliament.

Nigel Waterson, Eastbourne MP, said the Foreign Office and consular staff showed "a lack of understanding and support" to Laura Hill's family.

He told MPs that Alison and Kevin Hill, were given "conflicting information" on their daughter's death in October 2007.

Foreign Office minister Kim Howells said staff gave Mr and Mrs Hill "all the assistance they properly could".

He said: "They have provided information to Mr and Mrs Hill in order for them to make their own decisions."

They have left the most important questions surrounding Laura's death unanswered
Nigel Waterson MP

MPs heard that Miss Hill, a dental nurse, had been in Argentina on a "South American adventure".

Her parents were initially told she died of natural causes and was found on a park bench in Buenos Aires.

But an autopsy report in November said she was found on the first floor of an apartment building and had suffered extensive bruising and may have been "interfered with sexually", Mr Waterson said.

He said the woman's body was repatriated without her organs, preventing a Sussex coroner from carrying a post-mortem examination.

And he added that a toxicology report then indicated Miss Hill had a "lethal dose" of cocaine in her body when she died, and said: "I am told the dose was so high that it is unlikely Laura could have administered it herself."

The MP said: "The Foreign Office have not been as helpful as they could have been.

"They have not pressed for a meaningful investigation into Laura's death.

"And they have left the most important questions surrounding Laura's death unanswered."


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