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39 Dead Bodies Found In Lorry In Essex Industrial Estate
23 October 2019, 10:02 | Updated: 23 October 2019, 11:45
The bodies of 39 people have been found inside a lorry container on an industrial estate in Essex.
Police made the discovery in Grays early this morning. The driver, a 25-year-old man from Northern Ireland, has been arrested on suspicion of murder.
The bodies of 38 adults and one teenager were found around 1.40am at Waterglade Industrial Park in Grays.
The lorry is believed to have come from Bulgaria and entered the UK in Holyhead, Wales, on Saturday 19th October.
Chief Superintendent Andrew Mariner said: "This is a tragic incident where a large number of people have lost their lives. Our enquiries are ongoing to establish what has happened.
"We are in the process of identifying the victims, however I anticipate that this could be a lengthy process.
"We believe the lorry is from Bulgaria and entered the country at Holyhead on Saturday 19 October and we are working closely with our partners to investigate.
"We have arrested the lorry driver in connection with the incident who remains in police custody as our enquiries continue. I appreciate this cordon is going to disrupt the activity of local businesses in the area and we will work to ensure that disruption is kept as short as possible. We are working with Thurrock Council to mitigate against any impact our investigation scene will have locally."
A cordon has been put in place and access to and from the Waterglade Industrial Park remains closed.
Home Secretary Priti Patel tweeted: "Shocked & saddened by this utterly tragic incident in Grays. Essex Police has arrested an individual and we must give them the space to conduct their investigations."
Shocked & saddened by this utterly tragic incident in Grays. Essex Police has arrested an individual and we must give them the space to conduct their investigations.— Priti Patel MP (@patel4witham) October 23, 2019
Paige Wade was driving past the industrial park at 4.15am on the way home from work.
She said: "I honestly didn't see much, I had just finished work while driving up Motherwell Way and all you could see was blue flashing lights, as I was driving past there was police tape to cordon off the start of eastern avenue.
"I knew it was serious because of how many police cars and ambulances were there, but the police had parked their cars across the whole access of the road so you couldn't see anything.
"There's always lorries around there as they park up there for the night, I couldn't say whether I did or didn't see the actual lorry in question."