Media besiege cafe as Fred West murder victim search begins
By Punchline reporter | 19th May 2021
The world's media has descended on Gloucester today to record the start of excavations at the Clean Plate café, as police look for possible remains of one of serial killer Fred West's teenage victims.
More than 40 photographers, journalists and film crew surrounded the café in Southgate Street as police arrived to begin the grim task of digging for evidence.
The police were first alerted by a TV production company filming a documentary and decided there was sufficient suspicion to mount a full investigation.
The crew had reported possible evidence to suggest a body could be buried at the property, which has been linked to the disappearance of 15-year-old Mary Bastholm, who went missing in 1968.
Fred West was eventually charged with twelve murders, although with his wife Rose, the pair tortured, raped and murdered an unknown number of women over a period spanning twenty years.
He committed suicide in Birmingham's Winson Green prison before his trial. His wife was eventually convicted of ten murders in November 1995 and is serving a life sentence.
Rose West's solicitor has been interviewed on TV, amid speculation that she might also be interviewed by police.
The excavation work will last several weeks.
Mary's family have been updated of developments and are supportive of the operation. They continue to receive support from family liaison officers.
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