Rose West’s former lawyer thinks missing teen was serial killer’s first victim

Serial killer Rose West may have been involved with her husband Fred West in the case of a missing teenager feared murdered, a lawyer claims.

Police are searching for the body of Mary Bastholm, 15, at the Clean Plate Cafe in Gloucester where she worked as a waitress.

The teen, who disappeared in 1968, is feared to have been murdered by serial killer Fred West, GloucestershireLive reports.

She was last seen at a bus stop in Gloucester after finishing her shift at the cafe.

Although no trace has ever been found, Fred West reportedly admitted to killing her while on remand in prison, before his suicide in January 1995.

Leo Goatley, who represented Rose West for 12 years, believes she may also have been involved in the disappearance.

He suggested the teen may have been the twisted couple’s first victim in his book Noose, Lamella and the Gilded Cage: Understanding Fred and Rose West.

Mr Goatley sad: "I am pleased that there has been a new development.

"And I hope that it does reveal something and that at least the relatives will get some kind of closure.”

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He said the case had “occupied a lot of my time” writing his book as he felt it was unresolved.

If there are remains at the cafe, he said there is “a very clear and definite link to Fred and possibly Rose West”.

He added: “And it is my theory that Fred and Rose were involved in the disappearance and that Mary Bastholm was Rose West's first victim.”

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Rose West was convicted of killing 10 young women, including her own daughter and stepdaughter, and is serving a jail term.

Police are expected to be at the site, previously known as the Pop In Cafe, for several weeks.

A spokesman for Gloucestershire Constabulary said: "On Friday 7 May officers were called to a café in Southgate Street by a production company filming a documentary.

"They reported how they had found possible evidence to suggest a body could be buried within the property.

"Detectives attended and the Major Crime Investigation Team has deemed that further assessments are required in order to determine whether an excavation is necessary.

I"n the past, people have linked the building to the disappearance of Mary Bastholm."

In a statement, the family of Mary Bastholm said they “are aware of the ongoing developments around Mary’s disappearance and are being kept up to date”.

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