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  1. ITV Report

Swindon man identified 15 years after remains found in the North West

More than 15 years since he went missing, detectives have identified a Swindon man from human remains found in Lancashire.

The body was discovered on farmland near Chorley in July 2002.

Now after advances in DNA testing, police have been able to confirm the body belonged to 24-year-old Darren Carley.

He went missing from his home in Swindon in January 2002.

Darren Carley was 24 when he went missing from his home in Swindon in 2002 Credit: Lancashire Police

The mystery started more than a decade ago when a body was found by a dog walker in a pond near the village of Chorley Richard.

A post mortem examination showed he died after blunt force trauma to his head.

First and foremost my thoughts are with Darren’s family. For 16 years they have been left desperately searching for answers following his disappearance and I hope that the fact that he has now finally been identified and returned to them will offer them some peace.

While this investigation has never been closed, we now have a renewed focus on finding who killed Darren and piecing together exactly what happened to him after he went missing and how his body came to be in Lancashire. Hopefully we will be able to provide some further answers and some justice for his family.

We will not let the passage of time be a barrier to our investigation and we have a dedicated team of detectives working on this, pursuing a number of lines of enquiry.

– DCI Geoff Hurst, Lancashire Constabulary
Darren Carley's body was found more than 200 miles from his home in Swindon. Credit: ITV Granada

His body was buried at Chorley Cemetery but Darren Chorley has now been exhumed and returned to his family in Wiltshire.

Now a new murder inquiry has been launched by police in the North West to figure out who is responsible for his death.

Police are asking people to cast their minds back to Manchester in 2002 during the Commonwealth Games to see if they remember meeting or seeing Darren Carley at that time.

The original investigation to discovery the identity of the body led to a computer-generated image of the man’s face being created as well as a clay head model.

A lifesize model of the man's head was made at Manchester University to help identify him. Credit: Manchester University