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Crimewatch appeal generates new calls

Essex police say they've received a number of calls after a TV appeal over the house fire that killed a family of six in Harlow.

Dr Sabah Usmani and her five children died after the blaze last month. It's now being treated as murder.

In a fresh appeal on the BBC's crimewatch programme last night, police asked for information about a laptop stolen from the house on the night of the fire. Detectives described the case as tragic and unprecedented for the force.

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Harlow fatal fire - £10,000 reward offered

The family killed in a fire at their home in Harlow Credit: ITVAnglia

A reward of up to £10,000 is being offered following a house fire which killed six members of the same family in Essex.Sabah Usmani, her sons Muneeb, nine, and Rayyan, six, and daughter Hira, 12, died in the blaze in the early hours on October 15 at their home in Barn Mead, Harlow.

A third son, Sohaib, 11, and daughter Maheen, three, died later in hospital. Dr Usmani's husband, Abdul Shakoor, was the only survivor.Essex Police recently said they suspect there was a burglary at the house shortly before the fire.

Today Crimestoppers said it would pay the reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible.Ann Scott, the charity's eastern regional manager, said: "This is an absolutely heartbreaking incident which has devastated and shocked the entire community.

'It is impossible to imagine how Dr Shakoor, who survived the fire, is coping with the loss of his family. Please come forward to the independent charity Crimestoppers so this truly awful crime can be solved."

Information is particularly wanted about a group of four males who were outside the house in the early hours of October 15. They are described as aged between 16 and 19 and wearing tracksuits and baseball caps.

There were two others on bikes. The first is described as 15 to 18 with ginger or light brown hair. He was wearing black jogging bottoms with stripes down the legs, a hip-length anorak style jacket with a hood and was riding a light coloured bike.

The second was riding a black mountain bike, is described as 16 to 18 and was wearing a light grey top.

A laptop bag containing personal items belonging to Dr Shakoor was found abandoned near lock-up garages in Whitewaits, Harlow, on October 26.

It is thought the laptop might have been stolen in the burglary.

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Det Supt Rob Vinson talks to ITV Anglia about the fatal fire investigation

Detective Inspector Rob Vinson from the Kent and Essex Serious Crime Directorate has spoken to ITV Anglia about the on-going investigation into the death of six members of the same family in a house fire in Harlow. He starts by tellings us why some information had only been released now...

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