A photograph eerily reminiscent of the grainy picture developed in the darkroom during the classic 1966 film Blow Up could hold vital clues to a suspicious death in Australia.rnrnPicture: When developed the image revealed the motionless body of Tina Watson, lying on the seabed in the background of the picture Photo credit: Rex Features
Mandatory Credit: Photo by Rex Features
COLLECT PHOTO showing the lifeless body of Christina with a dive instructor at left swimming towards it - Coronial inquest into the diving death of Christina Mae Watson (nee Thomas)
Coronial Inquest into Death of Diver Christina Mae Watson on the Great Barrier Reef, Townsville, Australia - 19 Nov 2007
INQUEST INTO HONEYMOON DIVE DEATH BEGINS
An inquest has begun into the death of an American woman who died mysteriously while on a honeymoon scuba dive.
Tina Watson, 26, was on a diving trip to the Great Barrier Reef with her husband Gabe Watson in 2003 when she got into difficulty on the Yongala shipwreck near Townsville.
Mr Watson, a certified rescue diver, said his wife, an inexperienced diver, panicked when she got into trouble during strong currents. He said she knocked his face mask off and regulator out of his mouth, and he was unable to bring her to the surface.
Police said Mrs Watson was pulled from the water unconscious and later died. The pair had travel insurance and Ms Watson's life was also insured.
Mr Watson was named as a suspect by Alabama police in 2004 and, following a joint investigation by US and Queensland police, had his US home raided. FBI agents and Queensland detectives seized papers, photographs and a computer containing information relating to the diving trip.
Mr Watson will not attend the two-week inquest in the Townsville Magistrates Court, but may be questioned by video or phone link.
The proceedings have been described as a significant `logistical exercise', with evidence being heard from 65 witnesses from all over the world, some in person but many via video link.
Mr Watson is reportedly taking court action against the travel agency that arranged the trip, Getaway of Birmingham, Alabama, and travel insurers Old Republic Insurance Co and Travelex Insurance Services.
The insurance battle could see him receive hundreds of thousands of dollars from his wife's death. 714808j
A photograph eerily reminiscent of the grainy picture developed in the darkroom during the classic 1966 film Blow Up could hold vital clues to a suspicious death in Australia.
Detectives are analysing a holiday snap captured by a scuba-diving tourist off the Great Barrier Reef, which inadvertently reveals the motionless body of Christina Mae Watson, 26, in the background.
Christina, known as Tina, was pulled from the water unconscious but later died in the 2003 tragedy.
It is understood that the photographer, whose name has not been made public, only realised the importance of the picture years after it was taken.
The inquest in Townsville, Queensland is reportedly treating the image as a crucial piece of evidence in the unexplained death of the American who married just ten days earlier.
Tina and husband Gabe had decided to go diving as part of their honeymoon.
Mr Watson, a certified rescue diver, said his wife was an inexperienced diver who panicked and got into trouble during strong currents.
He said she knocked off his face mask and breathing regulator and was unable to bring Tina to the surface.
Mr Watson has not been charged in connection with his wife?s death.
The holiday picture shows a diving instructor swimming towards Tina Watson’s body and the photographer’s friend in the foreground.
Picture: When developed the image revealed the motionless body of Tina Watson, lying on the seabed in the background of the picture Photo credit: Rex Features