Coroner's Court of Western Australia

Inquest into the Death of Zainul MAARIF and the Suspected Death of Zhafran Bin KHAMIS

Delivered on : 19 January 2016

Delivered at : Perth

Finding of : Coroner Linton

Recommendations : N/A

Orders/Rules : N/A

Suppression Order : N/A

Summary : Zainul Maarif was not considered to be a strong swimmer by those who knew him. Zhafran Bin Khamis. on the other hand, was a fit young man who exercised on a regular basis and was a strong swimmer. He also knew the waters around Christmas Island well and was experienced at spearfishing.

On 7 April 2013 both deceased men went with a group of Christmas Island locals to Ethel Beach on the Eastern side of Christmas Island. The group planned to swim, snorkel and spearfish off the Ethel Beach Boat Ramp. Some of the men, including the two deceased, swam out to what is known as the ‘drop off’ and the rest swam south towards Low Point. After being in the ocean for about an hour most of the group returned to the boat ramp. They then noticed that the two deceased men were missing.

After conducting a short search the group alerted the authorities and a full search and rescue mission was launched. Later that evening the body of Zainul Maarif was recovered from the ocean. Despite extensive search efforts the body of Zhafran Bin Khamis has never been found.

The inquest focused primarily on determining whether the death of Mr Khamis could be established beyond reasonable doubt.

The Coroner found that Zhafran Bin Khamis died on 7 April 2013 in sea off Ethel Beach, Christmas Island as a result of an unascertained cause and death arose by way of accident.

The Coroner found that Zainul Maarif died on 7 April 2013 at Ethel Beach, Christmas Island as a result of immersion and death arose by way of accident.

Catch Words : Recreational swimming : Suspected death : Accident

Last updated: 27-Feb-2024

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