A SURFER from the New Forest hanged himself after police received allegations he had images of child pornography on his laptop, an inquest heard.

Police launched an appeal to trace Jamie Scriven after he went missing from his home in Totton following a separation from his wife.

Southampton Coroner’s Court heard how the 26-year-old, of Lexby Road, was facing allegations of having indecent images of children on his laptop computer, although no arrest had been made.

The inquest also heard how he had previously harmed himself four years ago after a previous separation from his partner led to a spell of serious depression.

Relatives and police believed he may have travelled to Devon or Cornwall to go surfing after going missing on July 4, and surfing websites carried appeals for information and for his safe return.

In a statement, the court heard how gardener Ivor Lovell discovered Mr Scriven’s body hanging from a tree in woods near Purnell Lane, in Buckler’s Hard, Beaulieu.

He was found on July 10 and a post-mortem revealed he had been at the site for at least two days.

Detective Sergeant Steve Deeprose told the court that his body had been found with scratches on his arms and legs which were consistent with people who harm themselves.

He said Mr Scriven was missing for several days following an argument with his wife after the images of child pornography were found on his laptop.

“He went missing several days after child porn was found on his laptop. He had not been arrested for these pictures,” he said.

“He was probably going to be arrested for child pornography allegations being made to the police.”

Det Sgt Deeprose said there was no evidence of any third party involvement or foul play in Mr Scriven’s death and that due to a previous suicide attempt police were satisfied he took his own life.

Dr Jacqui Davies said in a statement to the court how he had been treated for depression and was considered a significant suicide risk after a relationship break-up in 2004.

Deputy coroner Gordon Denson recorded a verdict of suicide.

“It appears in his own mind the future was bleak to the extent that he did what he did,” he said.