Four victims found in a burnt-out mill have been identified by police after partial human remains were identified.
After a fire broke out at Bismark Hill, Oldham on Saturday May 7, police confirmed teams had been searching for missing victims.
However, it wasn’t until Saturday July 23 when demolition workers at the mill made the gruesome discovery of human remains – with four victims tragically found dead.
Partial human remains were identified, through fingerprint analysis, as belonging to Uoc Van Nguyen.
The 31-year-old maintained regular contact with his wife until the date of the fire, at which time he said he was in a mill.
It is believed that three other Vietnamese nationals, who were also reported missing to police on Thursday July 21, may have been inside.
Nam Thanh Lee, 21, arrived in the UK in January 2022. He last contacted his family on May 4, at which time he said he was living in “a derelict house” in “Dam” – which the police believe is a reference to Oldham – while looking for work.
Duong Van Nguyen, 29, arrived in the UK about 12 months ago. He last contacted his family three months ago, at which time he said he was living in “an abandoned house” while looking for work.
Cuong Van Chu, 39, who arrived in the UK in June 2019, was also in regular contact with his wife and children, who have not heard from him since May 7.
Detectives are still trying to establish the cause of the fire – after it took emergency services four days to put out the blaze in May.
Detective Superintendent Lewis Hughes, GMP’s Victim Identification lead, said: “Our thoughts remain with the families in Vietnam, who are being fully updated and supported by specially-trained officers.
“Though we have now recovered human remains confirming four victims and are in the process of formal identification, the search of the site will continue until there is no realistic likelihood of recovering further human remains or objects of significance.
“It is, therefore, likely to continue for several more weeks.
“Meanwhile, officers from our Major Incident Team are continuing to follow 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.”