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Montreal police confirm 6th and 7th bodies found in ruins of heritage building fire

Click to play video: 'Montreal police confirm last two bodies pulled from ruins of heritage building fire'
Montreal police confirm last two bodies pulled from ruins of heritage building fire
Montreal police and the city's fire department confirm two more bodies were discovered in the ruins of a building fire in Old Montreal. Five of the seven victims have been identified – Mar 27, 2023

Montreal police say two more bodies were extracted from the rubble left behind after a deadly fire ripped through a heritage building in Old Montreal earlier this month.

The update Monday comes as the city’s fire department continued to search the ruins of what was a five-alarm blaze on March 16. The bodies of seven missing people have been found and extracted to date.

Insp. David Shane also confirmed the identities of four victims who were killed in the fire: An Wu, 31; Dania Zafar, 31; Saniya Khan, 31; and Nathan Sears, 35.

Police did not provide more details about the victims, but said they have been in contact with their families.

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“Our hearts go out to you,” Shane said.

As of Monday, five of the seven victims have been identified. Last week, police confirmed Camille Maheux, a 76-year-old renowned photographer, as the first victim.

The identification of the latest victims has not yet been made.

Fire operations chief Martin Guilbault says the fire department secured the structure and deployed search dogs, who helped locate the final two bodies. The death toll stands at seven and while he says searchers don’t believe there are more victims, they will continue to look through the rubble.

Both police and the fire department said it’s too soon to say what caused the fire, but the investigation continues.

“We’re going slowly but surely but we will find the cause of that fire,” Guilbault told reporters.

Some of those who were missing in the blaze had rented their accommodations on Airbnb and witnesses have raised questions about the safety of the building that housed illegal rentals.

Last Friday, the short-term rental company said it would pull listings in the province that don’t have a permit from the Quebec government.

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with files from The Canadian Press

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