The death of a man whose disappearance sparked a nationwide manhunt is to remain a mystery.

Arif Khan, 31, went missing from his home in Brunswick Place, Hove, on July 14 and was found off the coast of the Isle of Wight by two fishermen a week later.

A post mortem failed to establish the cause of his death and his inquest yesterday was unable clear up the riddle.

His brother Shomon Khan, 35, from Cardiff, told The Argus the open verdict delivered by the coroner was expected.

He said: "We had been speaking to the coroner's office for the last few months. They said because of the circumstances they couldn't say what happened or how he died.

"In the end we agreed to it on the papers. We have been dealing with this for such a long time we really didn't want to do it in a formal setting with members of the family speaking.

"With everything that has happened, there isn't a day goes by that we don't think about Arif.

"It's been going on for such a long time, this was the final part of it."

His disappearance sparked a nationwide police hunt and officers searched a field at the University of Sussex campus where Mr Khan was once a student.

Mr Khan's friends and family circulated posters around the city appealing for anyone with information to contact them and there was a suspected sighting of him in Germany, but his body was formally identified through DNA tests in October.

A post mortem failed to establish a cause of death.

Mr Khan moved to Brighton in 1993 to study for a law degree at the University of Sussex, completing it in 1996. After his degree he stayed in the city and trained as a web designer.

Before his disappearance, Mr Khan was being treated for depression and was studying at the Brighton Institute of Modern Music. There were no witnesses called to give evidence at the hearing held on Wednesday at Brighton County Court.

Mr Khan had been married, but separated from his wife five years ago, although they remained close friends. Mr Khan's girlfriend from Germany had flown to Brighton to help with the search when she heard about his disappearance.