The 39 Vietnamese migrants who died in a refrigerated lorry trailer as they were smuggled into Britain have been identified.
Detectives had been working with Vietnamese officials to identify the 31 men and eight women, whose families are now waiting to collect their bodies and planning funerals in their homeland.
DNA samples for identification were provided by 21 families from Nghe An province and 10 from Ha Tinh province in the Southeast Asian country.
The names of the victims have not been officially released.
The victims were found dead inside the container at an industrial estate in Grays, Essex, in the early hours of October 23 after it arrived on a ferry from Zeebrugge, Belgium.
The ferry landed at a port in Purfleet and paramedics and police were called to the industrial estate, where the trailer was found attached to a lorry, just over an hour later.
Having identified all of the victims, HM Senior Coroner, Mrs Caroline Beasley-Murray said: “May I take this opportunity to offer my deepest condolences to the victims’ families.”
The senior officer in charge of the enquiry, Assistant Chief Constable Tim Smith added: “This is an important step in the investigation and enables us to work with our Vietnamese Police colleagues to support the families of those victims.
“It is only right that we provide an opportunity for family members to take in the news confirming the death of their loved ones before releasing any further information.
“Our thoughts remain with the families and friends of those whose tragic journey ended on our shores.”
The 25-year-old driver of the lorry, Mo Robinson, of Craigavon in Co Armagh, Northern Ireland, has been charged with 39 counts of manslaughter, conspiracy to traffic people, conspiracy to assist unlawful immigration and money laundering.
Police have started extradition proceedings to bring 22-year-old Eamonn Harrison from Ireland, where he is in custody, to the UK.
Harrison, of Newry in Co Down, Northern Ireland, faces charges of 39 counts of manslaughter, along with human trafficking and immigration offences.
Detectives have also urged Ronan Hughes, 40, and his brother Christopher, 34, said to have links with the road haulage and shipping industries, to hand themselves in.
The pair, from Armagh in Northern Ireland, are wanted on suspicion of manslaughter and human trafficking.
Three other people arrested in connection with the incident – two men aged 38 and 46 and a 38-year-old woman – have been released on bail.
Essex Police and the Government have been working closely with a delegation from Vietnam during the painstaking process of identifying the victims and determining the cause of death of each one.
Vietnam has arrested two people in Ha Tinh province and nine in Nghe An. They face charges of organising people smuggling overseas.
An official from the Nghe An police force told Vietnamese media on Thursday that the bodies would be flown from the UK to Noi Bai airport in the capital Hanoi.
The bodies will then be handed over to families for burial.
Vietnam’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has called the incident a “serious humanitarian tragedy”.