British backpacker, 22, who disappeared in Thailand after ‘running into trouble’ is found alive

February 19, 2013 | by | 0 Comments
Backpacker Tom Armstrong disappeared in Thailand but has now been found safe and well in Bangkok

Backpacker Tom Armstrong disappeared in Thailand but has now been found safe and well in Bangkok

A British backpacker who mysteriously disappeared a month ago in Thailand has been found alive and well.

Tom Armstrong, 22, travelled to Koh Tao last April to do a diving course and was due to return home for Christmas.

But he emailed home saying he had “run into some kind of trouble” and would be returning in January instead.

He was due to arrive back at Heathrow Airport, London, on January 8 but never boarded his flight.

His disappearance sparked an international hunt and police revealed cash had been withdrawn from his bank account in Bangkok on January 16.

Three weeks later a Facebook appeal revealed a potential sighting of him in Bangkok.

His parents Helen Armstrong-Bland, 46, and Kingsley Armstrong, 51, flew to Bangkok to help Interpol and local authorities search for him.

They issued a statement revealing that Tom, who lived with his mum and two siblings in Kelsale, Suffolk, had been found in Bangkok.

Relieved Mrs Armstrong-Bland, an art and design teacher, said: “We’re in the very early stages and don’t yet know exactly what went on, but he is safe and that’s really good news.

“It’s all that matters.

“I just want to thank everyone in the Saxmundham community, our close friends and family, and people from all over the world – complete strangers.

“We wouldn’t have found him without them.”

She added: “He was due to come home before Christmas but for whatever reason didn’t arrive.

“That sent alarm bells ringing, but we received an email from him saying he had run into some kind of trouble in Bangkok.”

Mrs Armstrong-Bland said an auction of promises planned for this Friday in aid of Missing Abroad in Saxmundham Town Hall, Suffolk, would still be going ahead.

She added: “I always said it would be great if Tom was back home for it.”

In a statement Tom’s father Kingsley said: “We found Thomas yesterday, he is alive and well.

“We will be taking him out of Bangkok for a few days to prepare for the flight home.

“Thanks to all the people who helped both in this England and Thailand.

“There are too many to mention all, but a heart felt thank you to Darryl Daugherty who first made contact with Tom, Peter Fretton, Thai police liaison and Missing Abroad.”

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