London Bridge attack: Inquest opens into five victims’ deaths

(clockwise from top left) Kirsty Boden, Sebastien Belanger, James McMullan, Ignacio Echeverria and Sara ZelenakImage copyright Metropolitan Police
Image caption (clockwise from top left) Kirsty Boden, Sebastien Belanger, James McMullan, Ignacio Echeverria and Sara Zelenak

Inquests have been opened into the deaths of five of the victims of the London Bridge terror attack on 3 June.

Eight people were killed and 48 injured when three attackers drove into pedestrians on the bridge and then stabbed people in Borough Market.

Inquests were opened and adjourned at Southwark Coroner’s Court for Kirsty Boden, Sara Zelenak, James McMullan, Sebastien Belanger and Ignacio Echeverria.

Police are investigating the attack.

Ms Zelenak’s mother attended the court. Ms Zelenak was a 21-year-old Australian national, working in London as a nanny.

The inquest heard she died from a stab wound to the neck, in the market.

Image caption Kirsty Boden was killed after she ran towards London Bridge in an attempt to help people

Fellow Australian Ms Boden – a 28-year-old senior nurse, who ran to help as the attack unfolded – died from a knife wound to the chest, the inquest heard. Her body was found near Southwark Cathedral.

Spanish banker Ignacio Echeverria, 39, who went to defend a woman under attack using the skateboard he had been riding earlier, died from a stab wound to the back.

Representatives from the Spanish consulate attended the inquest on behalf of Mr Echeverria’s family.

Sebastien Belanger – one of the three French victims – died at Borough Market, of stab wounds to the chest. He was 36 and a chef.

James McMullan, 32, from Brent in north-west London – the only British victim to die in the attack – died from haemorrhage caused by a knife wound to the chest. His body was found outside Borough High Street post office.

Coroner Andrew Harris offered his “thoughts and condolences” to the victims’ families at the end of the 20-minute hearing.

Inquests into the deaths of French nationals 26-year-old Alexandre Pigeard and Xavier Thomas, 45, as well as 30-year-old Canadian national Chrissy Archibald, are expected to open on Wednesday.

Image caption Khuram Butt, Rachid Redouane and Youssef Zaghba carried out the London Bridge attacks

The attackers, 27-year-old Khuram Butt, Rachid Redouane, 30, and Youssef Zaghba, 22, were shot dead by police.

The police investigation has concluded that 27-year-old Butt was the ringleader of the operation, hiring and driving the van used in the attack.

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All three were based in east London, although only Butt was a British citizen. Redouane claimed to be Moroccan-Libyan and Zaghba was Italian-Moroccan.

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