Gately 'died from natural causes'


Boyzone star Stephen Gately died of natural causes, a Spanish court confirmed this morning.

Gately (33) was discovered dead on Saturday afternoon at an apartment he shared with his partner, Andy Cowles, near the resort of Port Andratx. He was found on the sofa in his apartment in Port Andratx after a night out.

A postmortem at the Institute of Forensic Medicine in Palma established that the singer suffered a pulmonary oedema, an accumulation of fluid on the lungs.

At a brief court hearing in the island’s capital Palma, a judge said that Mr Gately’s body could be taken home.

“The autopsy has found Stephen Gately died of natural caused by acute pulmonary oedema,” a court spokesman said. “There were no signs of violence. The judge is sending tissue samples to Barcelona for analysis.

“The court will wait for definite results of tests from Barcelona. While they wait the investigation is open,” he added.

If all these steps confirm natural causes the case will be closed.”

The official added that the investigation into the death will continue as a formality with Mr Cowles and one other person declared as official witnesses. The second witness is thought to be Bulgarian Georgi Dochev (25), who went back to the apartment with Mr Gately and Mr Cowles after their night out.

Mr Cowles was in court in Palma this morning giving evidence about the Boyzone star’s final hours. The internet entrepreneur arrived at court in the Majorcan capital Palma just before 11am (Irish time) for the closed hearing. He gave a statement to investigating judge Carmen Abrines through an interpreter.

The Gately family yesterday described his death as a “tragic accident” and ruled out it being a suicide. They stressed that neither drugs nor foul play were involved.

Solicitor Gerald Kean, acting as spokesman for the singer’s family, said papers have been signed to allow the release of his body but it may take a number of days before it is returned to Ireland.

“The family’s only wish is to get their son and brother home as soon as possible,” Mr Kean said.

He said a number of formalities remained to be completed before Gately is repatriated.