UK backpackers murdered in Thailand
Hannah Witheridge, 23, and David Miller, 24, murdered in Thailand in September, 2014.

Lawyers for the two Burmese men charged with the murder of British tourists Hannah Witheridge, 23 and David Miller, 24, say that new evidence provided by the British authorities could prove the innocence of their clients.

Burmese migrant workers Zaw Lin and Wai Phyo are charged with the murders of the two backpackers on the island of Koh Tao last September. Their bodies were found on the Sairee beach on the morning of 15 September.

Lead defence lawyer Nakhon Chompuchat said: "We have received information from the British authorities that shows inconsistencies in the prosecution case. It is significant evidence."

The Telegraph said Nakhon was unable to provide further details but did confirm that the evidence provided did not come from either the British police force or the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

The paper said the evidence is believed to have come from the examination of the bodies of the two victims in the UK and is related to DNA found on Witheridge's body.

Nakhon said he would be asking the judge to rule on why the defence was not allowed to conduct independent tests on the forensic evidence gathered at the crime scene.

The Telegraph said that soon after the trial had started, most journalists were moved out of the small courtroom to make room for families and the officials accompanying them. After lunch, those remaining in the courtroom were told they were not allowed to take notes.

Miller's body was moved by police before arrival of forensics team

The first person to give evidence was police Lieutenant Jakkapan Kaewkhao who was the first policeman to arrive at the murder scene at 6.35am.

He described finding the semi-clothed body of Witheridge behind some rocks splattered with blood and the body of Miller about 12 yards away. Pictures of the victims' bodies found on the beach were also shown in court.

He also admitted to moving Miller's body before the forensics team arrived as he was afraid it would be washed away into the sea.

Lawyers for the defendants had raised concerns as to why the police were slow to seal off the crime scene and why Miller's body was moved before the medics or a forensics team had arrived.

Jakkapan's testimony was followed by Dr Chasit Yoohat, who said he arrived at the beach at 8am and observed the scene for an hour before leaving and then returning at 10am when he examined the bodies.

He said Witheridge had suffered severe head injuries and there were signs that she had been sexually assaulted while Miller had been beaten.

On Wednesday (8 July), both defendants passed hand-written notes to the media saying that they were innocence.

"We know nothing about this case. We want justice and we expect to get it. Being in prison is like torture," Wai Phyo wrote while Zaw Lin wrote: "What is the truth of this case? We don't know."

Both men insist they were innocent and were forced to confess. They have since withdrawn their confessions.

Thai police insist murder investigations handled correctly

A senior Thai police officer told the Telegraph later that the investigation into the murders had been handled correctly.

"We think we did a pretty good job of sealing the crime scene, although we have a limited number of officers on Koh Tao and so local volunteers helped," said Colonel Kissana Phathanacharoen, the deputy chief spokesman for the Royal Thai Police said.

He insisted that the police had put together a strong case. "If we didn't have concrete evidence, the public attorney would not proceed with the case."