Body mix-up triggers council inquiry

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The Independent Online

An inquiry has been launched after the body of a man who died in police custody turned up at a mortuary more than a decade after he was believed to have been buried.

Christopher Alder, 37, a former paratrooper, choked to death while handcuffed and lying on the floor of a police station in Hull in the early hours of April 1 1998.

Hull City Council launched the investigation after discovering Mr Alder's body lying in place of that of Grace Kamara, a 77-year-old who died of natural causes in 1999.

Nicola Yates, the council's chief executive said: "We will be undertaking a thorough review."

Ms Kamara's council-funded burial was, for family reasons, only able to take place on Friday. It was immediately postponed once the mix-up was confirmed. Mr Alder's sister, Janet, has spent more than a decade seeking justice for her brother. A decorated soldier, he was arrested after a scuffle. An inquest found officers "partially dragged and partially carried" him to the police station after finding him in an unresponsive state in the back of the police van.

They thought he was "play-acting or asleep" and stood by laughing and joking. In 2002, five officers were cleared of manslaughter and misconduct over his death.

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