MANILA, Philippines—Lionel Albert Stride, the inmate who reportedly died of cardiac arrest Sunday in a detention facility in Bicutan, Taguig City was a British citizen, not a New Zealander, an official of the Bureau of Immigration said on Wednesday.
“The New Zealand embassy has already denied that he is [a citizen of New Zealand]. He is British and the British Embassy is searching for the next of kin,” lawyer Ma. Antonette Mangrobang, BI spokesman, said in a text.
The BI was still awaiting the autopsy report of the Southern Police District on the death of the 61-year-old Stride. A report on the circumstances behind his arrest has yet to be released by the bureau.
According to jail staff interviewed by the Inquirer, Stride, a tourist, has been at the immigration jail for some months after his arrest for being a public charge, or someone who cannot support himself, and for overstaying.
In an earlier report, Taguig police identified Stride as a New Zealander. They said the foreigner was found scavenging through trash in Makati City months ago before being brought to the BI’s detention facility in Camp Bagong Diwa.
Police reports revealed Stride was found dead at about 1 p.m. Sunday at the ground floor of Building 1 inside the jail.
His remains lie at Our Lady of Loreto Funeral Homes in Taguig.