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Two more held in Finland and quizzed over Malaga airport homeless death

The benches by the station entrance when the body was found.
The benches by the station entrance when the body was found. / S.S.
  • A total of four men have now been detained over the humiliating treatment of Briton Steven Allford on a bench last autumn

National Police have been giving more details of the detention in Finland and extradition to Spain of two men suspected of being part of the group involved in the death of a homeless British man at Malaga airport.

Steven Allford, 51, was found face down tied to a bench outside the terminal near the train station on 21 October last year. Detectives said he appeared to have been subjected to a humiliating ritual and was found with his trousers around his ankles, two pieces of ham on his buttocks and his genitals in a can of tuna. A post mortem concluded he had choked on his own vomit.

A video supposedly showing the incident and a group of men involved briefly appeared on Facebook afterwards and was spotted by Finnish police.

A Finnish man was arrested there and an Irish man, named by Spanish media as James O., also homeless, was found and detained in February this year in Algeciras (Cadiz).

As a result of the video evidence, a further three men were sought by police. Two of these were held in Finland on a European arrest warrant and brought to Malaga a month ago for questioning, police sources said. One was already in jail in Finland in connection with a different offence.

Questioned in Malaga, the two suspects, who were also living rough on the Costa del Sol at the time, said that what had been done to Steven “was only a joke”.

Both were sent to jail without bail as investigations continue. Prosecutors are asking for prison for the men, saying that, although the victim died after choking on his own vomit, the plastic straps tying him to the bench may have stopped him from saving his own life.

One more man, from Britain, who also appears in the video is still being sought and a warrant has been issued for his arrest.