German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

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German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Steve Wooler » Sun Nov 23, 2014 12:19 pm

It is with huge sadness that I learn that an elderly German couple, Hubertus and Birgid Keil, were found dead on Minister Bay beach, at Bacolet, yesterday. The nature of their injuries indicates murder. The couple own a holiday home just a short walk away from that beach and regularly spend the winter months on Tobago. What is particularly worrying is that their home, and the beach, are just a short distance from the house where Peter and Murium Green were attacked in 2009. In both cases, the couple were elderly and the motive not robbery. It is hard not to link the two incidents. If so, it indicates that a deranged individual is still on the loose and extreme care should be excercised, particularly by anyone staying in the Bacolet area.
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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Robert T » Sun Nov 23, 2014 12:40 pm

It is very sad indeed. We just heard about it yesterday. It looks like another machete attack although it hasn't been officially confirmed yet.


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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Chris_T » Sun Nov 23, 2014 1:58 pm

How terribly sad. Thoughts with the family.

This is really not good for the island. My wife to be are coming out after our wedding and this does not fill me with confidence.

I've been coming to the island for over 7 years and am starting to feel that the police do not take these things seriously. The murder rate this year for the population is bad. Now tourists too.

Needless to say, I will be taking the necessary precautions to protect myself and my family.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Glyn Kirpalani » Sun Nov 23, 2014 6:32 pm

The couple look familiar, no doubt I met them when walking on Minister Bay beach with my Dogs. Appalling tragic attack once again and the motive appears to be one of hate and not robbery, from the little we know, so I agree there is likely to be a connection with the Greens' attack, that remains unsolved. To those of you planning holidays to Tobago I would re-iterate the standard advice to avoid walking alone on deserted beaches like Ministers Bay, it is no longer the paradise Idyll it once was when Robinson Crusoe was filmed on it in 1960, sadly. I used to walk it with our 3 dogs (including a 100lbs male Rottie) but would not have walked it alone, even 5 years ago. So go and enjoy Tobago and do not make the mistakes of expat semi-residents, who often relax their guard and fail to follow the precautions advisable to short term tourists - I am in no way blaming these or any other victims for their evil downfall, but it ought to be said that almost all (or perhaps all?) of the foreigners murdered in Tobago have been long term residents or semi-residents/part year expats with own villas. I do hope they catch this person.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by GervaisAlkins » Sun Nov 23, 2014 10:17 pm

Hi,
I remember in the 80's there used to be a murder once every 5 or so years and if that occurred it was usually committed by a close friend, family member or lover of the victim.
The past couple years as have gotten really bad as I'm sure any right thinking person will agree.
The murders in Tobago were not only committed on expat foreigners. The Swedish couple who were murdered in Crown Point were there on vacation and there was also another German woman who was murdered in the Crown Point area who was there on vacation. Both murders also were unsolved.
Furthermore what's the difference if they were expats or not? Should that reassure visitors? "Come to Tobago! But don't settle here or you might get killed!"
Sorry, I don't live there anymore but this news hit me and my family hard today. We're visiting next year, have a young one but are now wondering whether to go back. The only one reason is we have family and friends there. That's the only reason. Not the beaches, or the warm whether. Not even my beloved trails and surf that I Iove. One can find that anywhere in the world.
Yes there is crime all over the world, but it's an island of 60,000 people. I have been robbed 3 times, had a British room-mate of mine nearly raped in the room next to me, a young friend of mine was violently butchered in C'ville nearly 14 years ago and known quite a few young woman who've been raped or attacked.
Paradise is lost. While I still believe Tobago can change I only think when the free oil & gas money from Trinidad runs out that Tobagonians will realize that tourism is really important to the island and then it might be too late.
I mean no insult or disrespect to Ms Kirpalani or anyone but people have been burying their heads in the sand too long. The situation has to stop and the only way things get done in T&T is by protest or if someone in power's (or with money) is affected.
I do hope things get better. We've decided we won't go Tobago if any serious crimes occur in the area where we'll be staying. I love my island but I love my family and their safety much much more.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Paul Tallet » Mon Nov 24, 2014 1:37 am

Not good, just before the busy season kicks off ... so another potential nail in Tobago's Tourism Coffin.

My thoughts are with the German couple and their family ... this must be a terrible shock.

These attacks are bad enough but what bothers me the most is that I am not aware of any convictions for these incidents, when they occur, at all. This is the key concern because if we knew that Tobago is successful in bringing the attackers to justice then that would be a big step towards crime prevention and be of more assurance to visitors ... sadly this is not the case.

As I have said before, these incidents do not put me off going to Tobago, I just get more cautious and never visit isolated areas unless with plenty of company.

I would adopt the same precautions wherever I go in the world. The problem for Tobago is that, in most other places, the attackers are more often found, identified and punished.

I hope this one is resolved.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Patricia » Mon Nov 24, 2014 12:32 pm

Tobago is on a downward spiral. What I found most disgusting was not even one article was posted about this unfortunate situation in the Tobago News online. Most every other Caribbean island newspaper (including Trinidad) mentioned this murder but nothing from Tobago's press.

I recently visited Tobago in July and all I will say is I highly doubt I will visit again anytime soon. The customer service was horrendous, the attitudes we encountered in shopping malls, groceries and restaurants was extremely distasteful, rude and nonchalant. The only Tobagonians that helped salvage the experience was the older crowd. I just don't know what will happen to Tobago but it's not looking good.

Its one thing for the government to give their condolences and quite another to DO something about it. Some vengeful person is after tourists and he or she is allowed to reign free because of the inept government and police force of Tobago. What could these two tourists have done to cause such an ANGRY attack?? Is there some history we don't know about? It all seems so personal. No hold up for cash or belongings but just a brutal death. It also appears they were renting a villa (perhaps?) from Abraham Realty. Why are tourists even renting from Abraham Realty when most of their villas are not on gated premises? It's just a huge risk if you ask me. You have to be so careful wherever you go.

From horrible customer service, 8 hour flight delays to and from Trinidad/Tobago, dilapidated conditions of hotels and guest facilities to now more rampant attacks and murders of tourists, its best Tobago learns this the hard way by tourists finding other islands to spend vacation. This is coming from a Trinidadian who is extremely "fed up" of hearing these stories and worse yet, the government not doing anything about it! No increased patrol, no local ordinance that requires all rentals and hotels have 24/7 security, just nothing. Tobagonians don't seem to care so why should tourists continue to spend their money there? Let them learn the hard way.

/End of Rant

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by BridgetLunniss » Mon Nov 24, 2014 3:23 pm

Very, very sad news. I will not let it put me off coming to Tobago. Been coming as a ordinary tourist for two weeks every January for eleven years. Follow the usual advice on safety in secluded places.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by GillianM » Mon Nov 24, 2014 4:42 pm

I agree with Patricia about the apparent lack of motivation for these crimes…why attack people in such a savage way for no reason? The only motives I can come up with are a)Extreme racial hatred b)Some personal vendetta or c) These poor poor people have witnessed something they shouldn't have. I agree with Gervais above who has now got a tricky decision to make in terms of bringing his precious family to a potentially dangerous place, balanced with his love of Tobago and all his friends and family there. I have the same dilemma-was about to book a January holiday(and bring a first timer with me!) when this horrific crime occurs. Where to stay that is safe? Only 24 hour security? Accommodation with owner on site? Following the usual advice on safety in secluded places is sadly in my opinion no longer enough.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Robert T » Mon Nov 24, 2014 6:04 pm

As others said before It won't stop us from going to Tobago either. Almost every year something horrific happens just before our trip. These attacks definitely made us a lot more cautious especially when it comes to choosing where we stay.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Chris Hill » Mon Nov 24, 2014 9:12 pm

This is a truly shocking story, it really looks like the targets are almost consistently elderly white couples that own property on the island, would that maybe point to a motive?

FWIW, the german news site Bild mentions the police is investigating 4 possible suspects, 1 from Jamaica, 1 from Guyana and 2 from Trinidad.

Original Bild article:

http://www.bild.de/news/ausland/mord/bi ... .bild.html

Atmittedly rather sketchy Google Translate of the above article:

https://translate.google.com/translate? ... edit-text=

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Paul Tallet » Tue Nov 25, 2014 9:43 pm

I agree with Patricia that the lack of reports on the Tobago News website regarding this incident is a big worry with other journals from the Caribbean and the World reporting on it. Hush Hush !!

The concerns expressed in this forum about the motive (or lack of it) is also worrying because this indicates that there is a very strong resentment towards visitors to Tobago ... this is maybe a minority.

But for all we know, the murderer may have been desperate to sell the victims a Coconut and they refused to pay him or accept the Coconut.

It can be as simple as that ... so I feel it is wrong to come to conclusions ... just hope that the authorities find the murderer ... but not confident of this.

To those that consider cancelling their holidays to Tobago I will say this:- "You are no safer at home than you are in Tobago" ... so, accordingly, I will be there in January 2015 ... business as usual.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Robert T » Tue Nov 25, 2014 10:38 pm

I guess Tobago News website is only updated on weekly basis that's why nothing has been published about this incident yet.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Gianna » Tue Nov 25, 2014 11:04 pm

My condolences to the family and loved ones of the couple. I cannot imagine the shock and pain they are feeling.

I usually travel to Tobago 2 sometimes 3 times a year. I am a bit hesitant making my next travel plans. I was thinking about staying in a different area but not so sure now.

I hope the person who did this is caught and bought to justice. Very sad situation for everyone that loves that beautiful island.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by GervaisAlkins » Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:52 am

The Tobago News is updated twice weekly. Which is great (for T&T expats like me) since we can get locally reported news and happenings quite frequently-ish. I'm pretty sure they'll include reports about the murders because they also recently had on the front page the story of the German woman who's kids were assaulted at home during a robbery.
How can anyone say "You are no safer at home than you are in Tobago" ??? Unless you live in a really rough part of Britain I don't understand that statement. I understand there is crime everywhere but violent crime is a totally different matter. I guess once you haven't experienced it personally it's OK to say things like that.
On the other hand I know people in Tobago who's family members and friends have been killed and they still stayed. I understand their position and respect it but they've never dared to say what happened to them can happen anywhere. I guess maybe if you were in Rwanda or Syria or Israel or Venezuela. Plus it's the frequency at which these crimes occur on a little island of 60,000 people is alarming.
I'm an outdoorsy person so too are my friends. When we travel we go somewhere we seek secluded beaches, unridden trails and empty wilderness. What's the point of going to a place where you have to stay in the village for safety? I like Castara too but I want to go to Cotton bay, Celery Bay, Pirate's Bay, Little Bay, L Anse Fourmi Bay, Highland Falls and dozens of other spots and not have to be fearful of getting attacked. This does not happen everywhere. Do not confuse yourself with that absolute fact. The biggest killer round here is hypothermia!
I understand why people love Tobago. I remember it as a kid and maybe that's why I feel this way. It was paradise. It may still be for those who don't know what is was like and nothings wrong with that. I just hope things get better too.


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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Glyn Kirpalani » Wed Nov 26, 2014 8:34 pm

Looks like the Germans may send detectives, let us hope they do:

http://www.guardian.co.tt/news/2014-11- ... nour-keils

They will of course be horrified at the poor training and equipment that they encounter amongst their Tobago colleagues but we must hope that their help/presence can catch the killer(s). Clearly this is not good news for the tourism industry, especially within the lucrative German market, and I am aware of some cancellations already so it must be said that visitors can still enjoy the island but only if they treat it as a walk on the wild side and follow the usual precautions that you must take in any destination with a record of murders of tourists, eg India, Thailand etc. Gervais for what it is worth I agree with you that you are at much more at risk of serious crime in Tobago than in, say, sleepy East Anglia, but the point I was making is that this risk can be reduced to very low levels if one follows the travel safety advice for any similar undeveloped destination, with a sharp disparity between rich and poor. However, I did indeed campaign against rising crime on Tobago with media articles (which made me enemies amongst those who wished to bury the issue) and attending crime marches etc, back in 2005 when things were starting to get out of hand. Back then the THA might have been able to turn things around, as nobody had been murdered yet, but nowadays I feel we just have to be realistic and enjoy the island in peopled beaches and with guides, staying in guarded resorts etc. Not the idyll it was for sure, but I struggle to name a single island which has not seen foreigners murdered now. And with each attack the entire region gets dragged down by association. The main difference appears to be that in the other islands that are dependent on tourism $ and have no oil or gas, the police are pressured to crack the crimes and usually do - this is the goal we need to achieve for the T&T police, but first there has to be a political will to do it :(

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Robert T » Wed Nov 26, 2014 10:15 pm

Good post Glyn , I totally agree with you.

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Re: German Couple Found Dead on Minister Bay Beach

Post by Glyn Kirpalani » Thu Nov 27, 2014 1:41 pm

Thanks Robert. Can I just state again for the record, in simple terms, for short and long term visitors, tourists and expats alike: do not walk alone or in small groups on quiet beaches with no people around or facilities. Whether on Tobago, Barbados, Jamaica, Antigua, St Kitts, Koh Samui, Bali, Goa and so on - the same basic rule applies for safety. Obviously this rule won't prevent home invasion attacks etc but it is common sense

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