Men Bailed Over Fatal Fire

Two men have been bailed in connection with a warehouse blaze in Warwickshire which killed four firefighters, police said.

A Warwickshire Police spokeswoman said the men, believed to be fire service staff, were arrested and questioned on suspicion of misconduct in a public office.

Six other men were arrested in February and March on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter in connection with the fire, including the father of one of the firefighters who died in the blaze. All six remain on police bail pending further inquiries.

Ashley Stephens, 20, Darren Yates-Badley, 24, John Averis, 27, and Ian Reid, 44, died in the fire at a vegetable packing plant in Atherstone-on-Stour in November 2007.

A police spokeswoman said: "Two men who were arrested on Wednesday April 7 in connection with the fatal fire at Atherstone on Stour in November 2007 have been released on police bail pending further inquiries.

"The men, aged 49 and 59 and from the south of the county, presented themselves at a police station in Warwickshire where they were arrested on suspicion of misconduct in a public office."

Last week Ashley Stephens's mother Sharon confirmed that her husband Paul, 54, was one of three men arrested on March 24 on suspicion of gross negligence manslaughter.

Speaking from the family home in Alcester, Warwickshire, Mrs Stephens said her husband, a retired firefighter, had also been questioned about alleged offences under the Health and Safety at Work Act.

She said: "He went to work that night and lost his son. This is a terrible, terrible tragedy."

Mr Stephens was released on police bail without charge.

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