Remains of third victim found inside Oldham mill 11 weeks after fire

The remains of a third victim have been recovered from a mill in Oldham where four Vietnamese men are believed to have died in a fire 11 weeks ago.

Greater Manchester police (GMP) said specialist officers made the latest discovery two weeks after the men were first reported missing on 21 July.

Search teams have been combing the remnants of the mill since the first victims were found on 23 July.

Det Supt Lewis Hughes, GMP’s victim identification lead, said: “I speak on behalf of all involved in this operation when I say that our thoughts are with the potential family members in Vietnam.

“Specially trained officers have been in direct contact with them and continue to liaise with partner agencies to ensure they are fully updated and supported.”

Detectives are investigating what led to the huge fire at Bismark House Mill on 7 May, including a suggestion that part of the building was being used as an illegal cannabis factory.

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Hughes said: “At the scene, extensive search and recovery work continues to ensure any further remains are respectfully recovered. Meanwhile, the investigation team is following several lines of enquiry relating to the fire and activities at the mill beforehand. Any criminal offences identified as part of their investigation will be progressed immediately and appropriately.

“Anyone with information which may assist us should contact Greater Manchester police or Crimestoppers, anonymously.”

The blaze took four days to extinguish and authorities initially believed no one was inside the building. Firefighters did not enter it at the time due to concerns over its structural stability.

Leon Parkes, the assistant chief fire officer for Greater Manchester fire and rescue, said firefighters followed the correct procedures but there would be a review of the incident and how it was managed.