A WOMAN has been charged with the murder of a former Southampton man found dead in the Caribbean.

Robert Hathaway, who previously ran a yacht building and repair company in Southampton, was found dead at his home in St Lucia in January.

His death, at the age of 66, sparked a murder investigation.

Now police in St Lucia have arrested and charged a woman over his death.

Elizabeth Janelle Volney, 22, reported locally as being from Ti Morne, Union, was apprehended on Friday in the town of Gros Islet, in northern St Lucia, where Mr Hathaway was a long-term resident.

According to local media, Volney was taken to court on Monday and has since been remanded in police custody.

Volney was reportedly due to enter a plea in court on Wednesday.

A spokesman for the Royal St Lucia Police Force said: “We have arrested and charged a young woman with the murder of a Briton.

“Since the death of this man, we have been carrying out an investigation into his death.

“We are appealing to the public to bear with us as we look into other cold cases.

“We are working very hard toward solving this case.”

Mr Hathaway founded the Marigot Sunshine marina catering for smaller sailing yachts and superyachts.

His business website says he studied engineering at the University of Cambridge before going on to a career in local government.

At 37, he spent a sabbatical year cruising the Mediterranean, prompting him to change careers and become operations director of a yacht building and repair company in Southampton.

It says he sailed to St Lucia in 2001 and bought land in Marigot Bay, going on to found his business five years later.

A CV posted on the site gave his marital status as divorced and says he was vice-president of the Caribbean Marine Association.

His Facebook page says he was originally from the village of Codford St Peter in Wiltshire.

Following his death, a spokeswoman for the Foreign and Commonwealth Office said: “Our staff are supporting the family of a British man following his death in St Lucia, and are in contact with the St Lucian police.”