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New leads in Norfolk murder probe

PUBLISHED: 08:24 22 April 2010 | UPDATED: 09:55 02 July 2010

Stephen Pullinger

Police were last night pursuing new leads into the suspected murder of a Great Yarmouth father of three whose body was found nearly six months after he went missing.

Police were last night pursuing new leads into the suspected murder of a Great Yarmouth father of three whose body was found nearly six months after he went missing.

Although it is still unclear how Derick Tempest died and no personal effects were found on his body, detectives say the discovery of the 30-year-old by the River Yare at the Berney Arms on Friday has opened up new lines of inquiry.

And as one of the murder inquiry's leading detectives, Det Insp Marie James, spoke of the further developments she described how Mr Tempest's family had been left distressed by the body's discovery.

Mr Tempest was last seen on October 28 as he walked along Yarmouth's Blackfriars Road towards Hall's Garage in nearby Camden Road where the bodies of the garage's owners, Jim Hall, 60, and Andy Ventham, 49, were found five days later.

It is thought that Mr Tempest was murdered in the garage and taken to the River Yare on the night of October 28 in a white van belonging to the garage.

After Mr Tempest's body was found on Friday afternoon, police carried out a search of marsh land around the Berney Arms.

Although there was an inconclusive post mortem examination and a lack of personal effects, Det Insp James said her fellow officers on the major investigation team were following up new leads.

She said: ““Following the post mortem examination we are now following further lines of inquiry but I can not say for the moment what they are.

“I spoke to Mr Tempest's family on Tuesday night and obviously they were very distressed, but hopefully this gives them some sense of closure at this very distressing time.”

Mr Tempest lived in Nottingham Way with his partner Sarah Sherfield and their three young children.

Following his disappearance army divers and a specialist police search team scoured the River Yare from Yarmouth's Haven Bridge to the harbour mouth.

Yesterday the Norfolk Coroner's Office in Norwich could not confirm when an inquest would be opened into Mr Tempest's death.

The major investigation team is still asking people who have information on the disappearance of Mr Tempest or saw the white van on the night of October 28 to contact Norfolk Constabulary on 0845 4564567.

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