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Nurse rearrested on suspicion of murdering eight babies and trying to kill nine

A healthcare professional has been rearrested on suspicion of murdering eight babies and attempting to kill a further nine.

The investigation into the woman has been ongoing for three years after a number of babies died in the Countess of Chester Hospital, Cheshire Live reports.

The probe is focusing on the deaths of eight babies and the non-fatal collapses of another nine connected to the neonatal unit between March 2015 and September 2016.

The woman had previously been arrested in 2018 and 2019, police said.

Cheshire Police said the parents of all the babies involved have been kept up to date with the latest developments, adding that "it is important to remember the families are at the heart of this".

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Detective Chief Inspector Paul Hughes, of Cheshire Police, said: "This is an extremely difficult time for all the families and it is important to remember that, at the heart of this, there are a number of bereaved families seeking answers as to what happened to their children.

"We fully appreciate that it continues to have a big impact on all those involved – including the families of the babies, staff and patients at the hospital as well as members of the public.

"It has been more than three years since we first launched an investigation into a number of baby deaths and non-fatal collapses at the neonatal unit at the Countess of Chester Hospital.

"In that time a dedicated team of detectives have been working extremely hard on this highly complex and very sensitive case doing everything they can as quickly as they can to identify what has led to these baby deaths and collapses.

"In July 2018, a healthcare professional was arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of six babies at the neonatal unit at The Countess of Chester Hospital. She was subsequently bailed pending further enquiries.

"In June 2019, the healthcare professional was re-arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of six babies. She was also arrested in connection with the attempted murder of three additional babies.

"Today, as part of our ongoing enquiries, the healthcare professional has been re-arrested on suspicion of murder in relation to the deaths of eight babies and the attempted murder of nine babies.

"The woman is currently in custody helping officers with their enquiries."

Detectives launched an investigation into infant deaths at the hospital in May 2017, initially looking at the deaths of 15 babies between June 2015 and June 2016.

The probe later widened to the deaths of 17 babies and 16 non-fatal collapses between March 2015 and July 2016.

Following her previous arrests, the woman's home in Chester was searched by police.

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