Bradford fire deaths police arrest teenager

A second man has been arrested by detectives investigating a house fire in Bradford in which two children died.

The 18-year-old was arrested on Thursday night in connection with the blaze in Hendford Drive on Tuesday. A 21-year-old man is also in custody.

Alina Shah, 10, and her brother Aman Shah, eight, died in the fire. Their mother remains critically ill.

Police said on Friday the fire had been started deliberately and "an accelerant" was brought to the scene.

Det Supt Bill Shackleton, who is leading the investigation, told a news conference: "At this time we believe this accelerant to be petrol, but tests are still ongoing to confirm this.

"Whoever brought the accelerant to the scene would have needed to carry it in a can or a small container. It is also known that the person setting this fire brought with them a quantity of paper.

"The paper has a strong resemblance to the plain paper used to wrap fish and chips."

Post mortem tests carried out on the children found they had died as a result of inhaling fumes.

West Yorkshire Police said they would like to hear from anyone who saw an individual or a small group acting strangely in the Hendford Drive area between 0030 BST and 0045 BST on Tuesday.

The children's aunt Nadia Naqui described her niece and nephew as "bright and talented kids" at a news conference on Friday.

Image caption The children's aunt said they were both bright and talented

"Aman aspired to be a footballer and Lina a doctor and they will never have the chance to fulfil their dreams," she said.

"Aman and Alina made me the proudest aunty in the world as they were truly angels in every sense.

"Every father expects to be buried by their children but this is not the case for my brother.

"Their mother is fighting for her life unaware that her children are no longer with us."

On Thursday, the head teacher at Alina and Aman's school described them as "superb children".

Richard O'Sullivan said: "The teachers have nothing but praise to say of them. Both very well behaved and had a wonderful attitude to school."

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