A journalist from Thames Ditton has reportedly been killed by a crocodile on holiday in Sri Lanka.

Paul McClean, a reporter for the Financial Times, was said to have been washing his hands in the river when he was attacked.

Tributes have been left to the “talented, energetic and dedicated” journalist, 24, by his colleagues.

James Lamont, managing editor of the Financial Times, said: "Few details are known about the circumstances. We are liaising closely with his family and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and offering the FT's assistance.

"Our thoughts are with his family, friends and loved ones. We are in touch with them, doing all we can to help during this difficult time."

Mr McClean worked on the FastFT desk, recently being based in Brussels reporting on Brexit and the EU, and is thought to have been staying with friends at the East Beach Surf Resort near Elephant Rock in south east Sri Lanka.

Katie Martin, head of fastFT, described him as "a warm, funny person and a talented young journalist with a curious mind" and "a joy to be around, truly, with an impish sense of humour".

The owner of Safa Surf School, Fawas Lafeer, said a fisherman saw Mr McClean being dragged into the river by the crocodile.

He said the reporter had gone into the jungle to go to the toilet and was washing his hands in the river.

Mr Lafeer, who said crocodiles have been known to hide bodies in the mud, added that it is "almost unheard of" for the reptiles to come so close to the beach, describing Elephant Rock as a "beautiful secluded beach and very safe".

A search operation was launched to find Mr McClean's body.

A spokesman for the Foreign Office said: "We are assisting the family of a British man who has died in Sri Lanka."