Three men charged over fatal Leicester explosion

Three men charged over fatal Leicester explosion

Three men have been charged in connection with a blast which killed five people in Leicester.

Arkan Ali, 37, Hawkar Hassan, 32, and Aram Kurd, 33, have been charged with manslaughter and arson with intent to endanger life over the explosion on Sunday evening.

Four of the people killed in the blast have been named as Shane, 18, and Sean Rajoobeer, 17, Leah Beth Reek, 18, who was Shane's girlfriend, and Viktorija Ljevleva, 22, with the fifth victim believed to be Shane and Sean's 46-year-old mother Mary.

Ali, of Drake Close, Oldham, Hassan, of Eld Road, Coventry, and Kurd, of Hillary Place, Leicester, are due to appear in custody at Leicester Magistrates' Court on Monday.

Two other men, both from East Anglia, have been arrested over the blast and continue to be questioned by police.

The force said they were detained on suspicion of conspiracy to cause an explosion and for offences under the Proceeds of Crime Act.

The incident on Hinckley Road, which demolished a supermarket and the two-storey flat above, follows an explosion in Boston, Lincolnshire, in 2011 which killed five Lithuanian men and was caused by an illegal vodka factory.

Leicestershire Police refused to comment on media reports which said the Hinckley Road explosion may have been caused by an illegal alcohol distillery.

Human remains were recovered from the ruins of the building after the blast which was followed by a large fire.

Specialist officers continued to sift through the wreckage in search of clues, with the scene expected to remain cordoned off for several days at least.

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