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1994: West charged as death toll mounts

Fred West has been charged with two further murders following the discovery of more human remains in the garden of his Gloucester home.

He is already facing a murder charge over the disappearance of his 16-year-old daughter Heather, whose dismembered body was found in the garden of the house at 25 Cromwell Street on Sunday.

Police have identified the second body as that of 18-year-old Shirley Robinson. The other body has not yet been identified.

Police using archaeological techniques began carefully digging up the back garden of Fred and Rose West's home on 24 February following a new tip-off about the disappearance of Heather seven years ago.

Heavily pregnant

Detective Constable Hazel Savage began investigating the Wests in 1992 after she received information they had been involved in child abuse. It led her to begin investigating Heather's disappearance.

Fred West has admitted murdering his daughter, but denied Rose had any involvement.

He has not given police any further clues as to the identities of the two other women found buried in his back garden. Police have just released the name of Shirley Robinson.

Detective Superintendent John Bennett said: "She was heavily pregnant, some six to eight months. We also know from our inquiries that a woman using that name had connections with Wolverhampton, Leicester and Bristol."

The other as yet unidentified body is that of a woman in her early 20s.

The excavation of the garden has attracted much interest from neighbours. Some have laid flowers outside number 25.

Police are still trying to contact other members of the West family. Frederick West was married twice and had a total of nine children. But it is not thought the unidentified body is another relative.

In Context
Fred West was eventually charged with 12 murders. He escaped trial by committing suicide at Winson Green prison on New Year's Day 1995.

Rosemary West was convicted on 22 November 1995 at Winchester Crown Court for the murder of nine young women, including her daughter Heather and stepdaughter Charmaine. She was sentenced to 10 life terms.

The "House of Horrors" as it became known was demolished in October 1996 and has been turned into a landscaped footpath.

West's brother, John, committed suicide while on trial for raping his niece Ann-Marie. She and her brother Stephen have both made failed suicide attempts.

West is believed to have committed other murders, including that of Mary Bastholm, 15, who disappeared in Gloucester in 1968. No other bodies have been found.


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