Gay link suspected in killing of English teacher

11th June 2004 at 01:00
A British teacher shot dead in Pakistan may have been executed by attackers who believed he was having homosexual relationships with students, local police allege.

Alan Cox, 60, was killed last Thursday evening in his home in Multan, where he taught English.

Hamid Hukhtar Gondal, Multan's police chief, told the Associated Press that investigators found images of nude men on his computer. They also found pictures of him in bed hugging other men, although he was fully clothed.

Chief Gondal said: "Further investigations revealed sexual relations with some of his students."

Details of Mr Cox's sexuality and any role this might have played in his murder have not been independently confirmed.

A post-mortem examination revealed he was shot repeatedly and suffered multiple stab wounds. No arrests had been made as The TES went to press.

Mr Cox had been teaching English to adults from his home in the Punjab for eight years. He held daily lessons and a weekly conversation group.

On his website, Mr Cox described learning Urdu in order to help teach maths to non-English-speaking children arriving from South Asia to his school in Manchester.

Pakistani and British students had entered testimonies to his success as a teacher on a guestbook on this site, some complimenting his long-term efforts to bring the two countries closer.

After travelling to Pakistan several times for tourism and his own language practice, he moved permanently in 1996.

Homosexuality is illegal in Pakistan, an Islamic state whose statute is based on Sharia, the religious law of the Koran.

Tim Handley, media officer at the British High Commission in Islamabad, told The TES: "Anyone coming (to Pakistan) for employment should also discuss issues relating to personal safety with their future employers.

They should then register with the British High Commission on arrival."

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