UK backpacker dies en route to Dubai


An English backpacker has died on a flight from Melbourne to Dubai after Australian immigration officials had ordered him from the country.

Michael Edgeley, a 22-year-old former student from Preston in north-west England, became ill on the Emirates flight on Saturday, forcing the carrier to make an emergency stop in Mumbai so he could be taken to hospital.

But he died just minutes later in the back of an ambulance, The Lancashire Evening Post reports.

The newspaper says Mr Edgeley had been in Australia since last year, basing himself in Melbourne, but had run out of money and was sleeping rough on the streets.

When his visa expired, Australian immigration officials ordered him out of the country, it says.

A spokesman for Emirates told the newspaper the passenger was given oxygen by cabin crew, who were assisted by a doctor and nurse travelling on the flight.

“On arrival in Mumbai, the passenger was given further medical assistance organised by Emirates’ airport team, however the passenger sadly passed away while being taken to the hospital,” the spokesman said.

“The cause of death is obviously under investigation and Emirates’ condolences are with his family at this sad time.”

It is believed Mr Edgeley was ill before he boarded the plane.