Bhandari and a Costa Rican divemaster identified as Jimenez, 26, were carrying out a safety stop following a morning group dive at the Manuelita site.

The female shark approached and took Bhandari’s legs in its mouth, causing severe lacerations.

In trying to fend off the shark Jimenez also sustained a bite to the leg, according to a report from Costa Rica’s Ministry of Environment & Energy.

The divers were part of a group of 18 diving from the Sea Hunter liveaboard, one of the two Undersea Hunter Group vessels.

A crewman aboard the attending dive-skiff tried to scare off the shark while the two divers were recovered to the boat.

Medics among the dive group and national park rangers who arrived on the scene applied first aid, but Bhandari died from her injuries soon afterwards. Jimenez’s condition was later described as serious but stable.

Cocos lies in the eastern Pacific some 330 miles from the mainland. Five tiger sharks, including two females, have been recorded in the area, which is famous among divers for its exceptional shark populations, especially its hammerheads.

The fatality is the first such incident to occur in Cocos, according to the ministry.

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