Sam manages to identify all but one of the 12 victims, body As she gathers more information, including the use of a facial reconstruction, she comes to believe that body 10 is in fact someone who was supposed to have been killed years before and for which Chris Caldwell was convicted of murder. Sam becomes attracted to Caldwell and manages to get him set free, but when others are subsequently murdered, Connor does not believe Caldwell is quite as innocent as Sam believes.
When twin brothers Jake and Henry Davies are found dead in their home, the police initially suspect robbery, as the elderly gentlemen were known to keep large sums of cash in the house. The autopsy reveals murder however and Sam determines that skin grafts both men have on their arms may have been a crude form of plastic surgery meant to cover tattoos of concentration camp numbers. Thinking they are now dealing with a hate crime, the police focus on Carl Martin, a known race-hater.
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What they have however is a case of someone seeking revenge for the atrocities committed long ago. When the naked body of a young woman is found in the snow at a Norwegian ski resort, Sam is asked to represent the Townsend family whose daughter Ruth disappeared there several weeks before. The autopsy however reveals that it is in fact the body of Louise Hutton who had vanished there some 15 years previously.
When Ruth's body is found, it appears both girls were strangled in a similar fashion. The police focus their enquiries on Ruth's boyfriend and on Henry Hutton, Louise's uncle while Sam seeks the advice of a university colleague and tries to draw a profile of the serial killer. Paul Unwin. Sam becomes under great stress when she learns that she may have a tumour. As a result, she starts to question her judgment when she misses a possible explanation in determining the time of death in the case of Lloyd Dupen's wife, an apparent suicide.
She's not convinced however that everything is above board and agrees to undertake a second autopsy at the request of the dead woman's mother. When she is asked by local reverend Bishop Craig to perform an autopsy on the remains of Sister Constance, a beatified nun who died forty years ago and is under consideration for canonization, the results of the autopsy affect the religious order as well as many of those in the community who see the commercial advantages of having a local saint.
Sam assists the police in the investigation of a multi-vehicle collision that results in the death of eleven people. She is joined by two new colleagues: Dr. Leo Dalton, an experienced pathologist from Sheffield, and Dr. Harry Cunningham, a new trainee pathologist who has just graduated from university. As they try to determine the cause of the accident, they find a severed arm that does not belong to any of the victims. They also have to deal with DCI Carol Deacon, whose role in the investigation appears to be not quite crystal clear to them.
The mystery of the severed arm is soon cleared up when the police discover a body floating in a local river with only one arm. Sam decides to conduct her own investigation with little help from the police; however, DCI Deacon soon reveals to Harry that two of the men in the accident were undercover policemen, and realising that Sam is being manipulated, asks her to stay away. The police refuse to inform them of all the details, and soon, Sam's interference has serious consequences.
Harry continues to try to find a balance between detachment and compassion as one of the survivors of the crash seeks his assistance. The police investigate an apparent break-in that resulted in the death of businessman Derek Irons, his wife and youngest daughter. Two older children survive the attack, but one is in a serious condition and the other in a coma. Sam soon discovers that Irons was a ruthless businessman who targeted his rivals' customers resulting in regular confrontations. When Harry and Leo perform the post mortems on the three bodies, they discover that Irons was stabbed, but his wife and daughter were shot.
Sam is soon reunited with an old friend from Northern Ireland, Det. Tony Ashton, who becomes the senior investigative officer on the case. As the police continue their investigation into the deaths, they begin to believe that he may have been killed elsewhere, and then transported to his home. When one of the two surviving children is murdered, Ashton looks to a circle of friends and family for a possible motive. Meanwhile, Harry assists the police with the death of an old woman who is believed to have fallen down a staircase, however, his post-mortem reveals evidence that is not consistent with a fall.
As the police investigate further, they soon discover a link between her death and the Irons family murders. John Duthie. When a decomposed body is found hidden in the wall of an old factory building, Sam comes to the conclusion that he was murdered. He is eventually identified by his ex-girlfriend Selina Thomson as Marcus Saul, a man who had simply disappeared one day some seven years earlier. The police soon have a suspect in mind, however, new information suggests that the identity of the killer may lie in a completely different direction. Meanwhile, at the university, Leo is asked by the Dean to investigate a break in on campus, which resulted in a large amount of drugs being stolen.
Hours later, a student is found dead after suffering a drug overdose, and the university must face the wrath of the girl's father, a major benefactor. When Leo performs the autopsy, it reveals that not only had she taken drugs, but also that she had sexual relations with three different men in the last 48 hours. Paul Wroblewski. Sam investigates when police probation officer Jason Villers is found murdered on a landfill site, after being tied up and being burnt across the back.
The police soon establish a link between Villiers' murder and the murder of student Michael Haughty, who was found murdered in the same place just months before. With no link between the two killings, the police come to believe that they may have a serial killer on their hands. When a second police probationer officer is found dead, Sam concludes that they may be dealing with a copycat killer, rather than a serial killer.
The police begin to believe that a fellow probation officer may have been responsible for the murders, however, it appears that the commandant, whose son is a trainee student, is covering up the deaths to keep the reputation of the college protected.
In a separate case, Harry is approached by the wife of an old university friend who asks him to perform a post-mortem on her husband, who supposedly died in a fall.
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However, he finds that the man was injecting himself with drugs regularly and that his wife was the one who was prescribing them to him. Dusty Hughes. When a suspected terrorist attack causes an explosion at a hotel, the death of a highly respected government minister appears to be the key to the motive behind the attack. However, Sam soon discovers that an old acquaintance of hers was also at the scene, and as she delves deeper into the case, has to deal with her attempted rape, which occurred earlier that evening.
Determined to get to the bottom of the minister's death, she conducts a second autopsy, but her findings are soon undermined by an independent pathologist, who appears to have a stronger link to the case than meets the eye. To make matters worse, the investigation team threaten to strike Sam off if she supports a dead woman's family at an inquest. Sam comes under intense scrutiny during an official inquiry into the deaths of two brothers while they were in prison. Her findings are soon challenged by Leo, who is brought in by the Crown to perform a second autopsy.
Meanwhile, a series of murders that are taking place cast suspicion heavily on a suspect who has recently been released from prison. Sam soon comes to believe that someone is stalking her, and the police have trouble locating the ex-convict. When a sports agent is found dead, the police suspect suicide. However, Sam is not convinced, and when the post-mortem reveals that she was in the early stages of pregnancy, and that she had severe bruising to her arms, signs of a sexual assault appear to convince Sam otherwise.
Matters are complicated further, however, when a client that she was having an affair with is also found dead. Tests reveal the father of her baby is Caucasian, which rule out her client, but appears to implicate her husband for the murder, despite his alibi. However, Sam is soon sidelined from the investigation following a disagreement with DI Jayne Hurst, and Harry's efforts to determine the time of death prove unreliable.
Sam, Leo and Harry are alarmed when the home office assign them to re-examine the work of independent pathologist Peter Sachs. Although Sam and Leo suspect Sachs is acting suspiciously, Harry refuses to believe that he is in the wrong. Sam discovers that Sachs has been using a new method of determining time of death, and against her better judgement, uses Sachs in order to provide evidence to determine the time of death of Eddie Doyle, who was murdered due to being a witness to Craig Proctor's murder.
When the bodies of two men are exposed during a landslide in Ireland, Sam is forced to make a long overdue painful journey home. The subsequent investigation suggests the pair died during the sectarian violence of the s. However, a secret closer to home soon comes to light. The investigation reveals evidence of RUC corruption, and Sam is soon startled when the evidence points to the involvement of a member of her own family. As the police pull out all the stops to track down the killers, Sam makes an announcement that stuns her colleagues.
Leo and Harry's professional rivalry erupts following Sam's departure. They find themselves dealing with the case of several children living on the coast who have experienced unexplained breathing difficulties, leaving one boy, Paul, dead. While Harry believes that the case is simply nothing more than mass hysteria, Leo suspects something more sinister. Meanwhile, a man, Nick Garner, is found dead in his car with a stab wound to the chest. When a link between the stab victim and the ill children begins to emerge, Leo becomes determined to discover who is responsible before any more fatalities occur.
However, it may be too late, as a baby, Ella, dies after being refused hospital care. Harry discovers the truth behind Nick Garner's death, and Leo realises that a boatyard may hold the key to the children's symptoms.
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Richard Holland. After being promoted into the Professor's position, Leo is surprised to be united with Dr. Nikki Alexander. Nikki, a pathologist whose expertise lies in solving Iron Age mysteries with modern day techniques, finds herself covering new ground when she ends up bringing her expertise to bear on a modern murder. The case in question is the death of a jockey crushed by his mount during a race.
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Harry and Leo suspect it was simply an accident. However, when two of the horses' owners are killed in a helicopter crash, evidence emerges that both the horse and the pilot were drugged. Harry and Leo suspect syndicate member Matt Gibb was responsible for the deaths of his co-owners and the jockey, and Nikki's skills help expose the cracks in his story. Gibb confesses to drugging the horse but denies any involvement in the helicopter crash, leaving the pathologists divided over whether to believe him. Douglas Mackinnon.
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The team are approached by the survivors of a major train crash, which resulted in the death of twenty-one people. Looking for answers as to who and what caused the crash, they ask Leo, Nikki and Harry to attempt to identify 'Body 21', one of the twenty-one victims who has yet to have been named. However, determined to investigate the actual cause of the crash by using backdoor methods, Leo begins to uncover a tangled web of lies.
He begins to suspect that Army Major Mark Wiltshire is involved, after his stolen Landrover is what is known to be the cause of the crash, but an alibi places him in the mess hall at the time of the incident. Working with the survivor's group, the team attempt to re-create the layout of the train prior to the crash occurring.
The investigation delves deeper when one of the surviving passengers commits suicide. Harry and Leo soon discover that the identification of the last victim could lead to revealing the cause of the crash, and that the solution lies on discovering an unknown romantic affair and a marital betrayal. Meanwhile, Nikki is called out to a river when the bodies of two unidentified women are discovered, both shot in an execution-style.
Upon his arrival in Sheffield, Leo is greeted with awful news and, haunted by the deaths of his wife and daughter, he goes on a quest to find the man responsible. Harry and Nikki attempt to counsel him as the police infiltrate a gang of identity fraudsters, but when he finally catches up with the enemy, he faces a difficult choice between exacting revenge or following legal procedures.
The team are called to the scene of a drive-by shooting, where they are joined by detectives from Operation Trident investigating a turf war between drug gangs. The case proves less clear-cut than expected when evidence emerges that someone returned fire. With a second shoot-out imminent, the team face a race against time to track down the elusive gunsmith before he can arm both factions for the confrontation. Harry follows up a lead, but finds himself in a dangerous situation, and Nikki continues to investigate Lisa's death.
The team pursue a serial killer with a grisly desire to look at his victims' faces as they die, and the trail leads into the world of academic philosophy. However, Nikki is distracted from the case by the death of her grandmother, while Harry investigates the demise of a woman who apparently drowned in three inches of water. Meanwhile, Harry delves into the death of the drowning victim, discovering that her demise was the result of a cruel twist of fate. Leo is called to investigate the suicide of Kevin Perry, a mental patient from the January House private care home, who has recently been released after his course of treatment ended.
Fellow patient David Nicholson is also on the warpath, stabbing three innocent victims in his latest psychotic episode, killing two, before he is captured by police. Meanwhile, Harry is tasked with investigating the suspected suicide of seventeen-year-old Nazim Theara, who reportedly jumped in front of a train for no apparent reason. When the doctor treating both Perry and Nicholson, Dr. Sanders, fails to explain why the pair carried out such actions, Nikki and Leo are forced to dig deeper, and discover that someone has been tampering with the patient's medication.
But when the doctor in question decides to attempt suicide, Nikki becomes convinced that he was the one responsible, causing their conditions to remain uncontrollable. As Harry continues his investigation, against the girl's adamant mother, who is positive she did not kill herself, he discovers that the girl had taken the same cocktail of anti-depressants taken by suicide victim Kevin Perry - and the lead soon becomes linked to a dodgy online pharmacy.
Four bodies are found in the Thames after a boat full of illegal immigrants founders. Realising they are dealing with a people-trafficking operation gone disastrously wrong, Leo, Harry and Nikki set out to discover if there are any survivors - or any other deaths - while also delving into the victims' past. The team soon manages to identify the four bodies and discover two of them were a couple fleeing China because they wished to have a second child. Nikki realises their six-year-old daughter was also on the boat and may still be alive.
Meanwhile, the detectives close in on the gang running the people-trafficking operation. The team members find themselves under pressure whilst working a number of parallel cases. Harry is called out to a council estate in which a sixteen-year-old boy has been killed in a hit-and-run, Leo investigates the cause of a fire that left a housewife dead and Nikki is called out when a bride-to-be collapses and dies on her hen night. Harry discovers that the car that killed the young boy has a custom paint job, linked to only a small number of cars in the country - but before he can inform the investigating officer, she is killed after being hit by a bus.
Meanwhile, Nikki assists the detective looking into the house fire in a separate case in which an office prank has proved fatal, Leo investigates the death of a dentist whose body was found on a night bus and Harry discovers a link between the apparent suicide of a high-profile footballer and the death of the young boy. Harry's burgeoning relationship with Nikki is jeopardised when his ex-girlfriend Penny is killed in a car crash. It looks like suicide at first glance, but DCI Lauren Ambrose uncovers evidence that the victim may have had an affair - as well as a secret child. Meanwhile, Leo examines the staged death of a conceptual artist, Jimmy Triangle.
With Harry determined to find Penny's killer, he and Nikki are pushed further apart when he forces her to re-examine Penny's body. Leo is puzzled by more contrary clues in Triangle's bizarre death - and soon becomes convinced that someone is playing a twisted game. When Leo is called to investigate the apparent suicide of year-old Alison Garland, it evokes painful memories of his daughter's death.
But with the help of the school's child psychologist, he realises the girl was murdered. The case is soon linked to another incident in which a car salesman, Chris Duncan, was killed with the same knife. When the deputy headteacher of the school is also found dead, Leo realises that the killings are connected to a sinister teenage pact.
Meanwhile, Nikki investigates the death of an elderly victim, who appears to have died of as the result of injuries she sustained to her head and legs - but she soon believes that there is more to the situation than meets the eye. A teenage girl is found tortured to death in a London dogs' home, and an office employee at one of the world's largest animal experimentation facilities is found dead in her flat.
It soon emerges another woman is being held hostage by the culprits, who turn out to be the owners of the facility itself, who have kidnapped a violent team of animal activists who were seeking to raid one of the experimentation facility buildings. However, the case becomes much more complicated when Nikki is kidnapped by the activist's group leader. Harry faces a race against time to find her captors, who are based deep inside the woods.
Meanwhile, Leo's best friend Lionel is forced to partake in a hearing against his conduct, and Leo must decide whether to follow his conscience at the expense of his best friend's livelihood. Stephen Davis. Harry and Nikki are called to investigate when an RAF helicopter crashes into a detention centre for failed asylum seekers, shortly after appearing at a nearby airshow, which both Harry and Nikki were attending.
When it appears that the military are trying to hush up the incident, they each open their own investigations to prove that the pilot was not at fault for the crash, and to identify a mysterious girl who fled the site amid the carnage, taking Nikki's handbag with her. With Harry's attempts to prove the pilot innocent bordering on obsession, the father of the deceased asks him to perform an independent autopsy, which reveals that at the time of his death, he was taking medication for anxiety, which was brought on by the fact he believed that the aircraft was not safe to operate.
Meanwhile, Nikki identifies the detention centre victim, but realises that by doing so, she may have put his daughter in danger with his long list of dangerous enemies. The discovery of the mutilated body of a young African boy in a river forces Leo to face a ghost from his past - the death of his own daughter, Cassie. Questions are raised as to whether the victim was murdered in a ritual killing, and evidence points the team in the direction of a nearby church - however, Leo has other ideas, and suspects that the murders may be related to a local African cult group, operating from a warehouse unit in central London.
Meanwhile, Nikki investigates the suspicious death of a priest from a local Catholic boys' school, Father Reed, who appears to have been taking drugs for depression at the time of his death. Looking for evidence at the scene of the mutilated child's body, Harry and Leo discover the badly decomposed body of another young African boy, which continues to spark disagreements between them, resulting in accusations of racial bias dogging their attempts to solve the case. Meanwhile, the body of another man linked to the priest's murder gives Nikki more leads to follow up, and leads her on a trail of revenge, death and confusion amongst the school.
Diarmuid Lawrence. An accident involving a lorry and a funeral procession results in the bizarre discovery of two bodies inside a coffin - that of the deceased, Ethel Mortimer, and an unknown young man who suffered from a coke addiction. Meanwhile, Leo and Nikki's suspicions are aroused during a post mortem on a child, Ellie Harris, who died during a high-risk operation. When the second body is identified as Jamie Featherstone, the boyfriend of nurse Claire Kizowski, both investigations lead the detectives to a surgeon, Alice Huston, who appears to have a high rate of fatality amongst her patients.
Investigating the possibility that someone on Huston's team is responsible for Jamie's death, Nikki is viciously attacked when she goes to meet Claire in the hospital basement. As she struggles to remember who attacked her, Harry works hard to discover just what happened to Jamie on the night of his death, and looks into Huston's case files, only to discover that she is being sued by the parents of a deceased patient - Sam Reid. However, when Harry discovers that Reid's death was down to Huston's registrar, who is also discovered to be an impostor, he soon realises that he may have worked out who is responsible for Jamie's death.
A horrific car crash poses troubling questions for Nikki when she discovers that one of the two victims was the recently released Anna Holland, an accomplice to a particularly brutal murder whom she helped escape a life sentence four years earlier, by providing evidence for the defence. As it appears she was stabbed before her death, the police attempt to discover who knew the location of the safe house in which she was staying - and who had a strong enough grudge to want her dead. As the investigation progresses, Nikki re-interviews key witnesses from the original case, and begins to doubt her earlier conclusions.
As she prepares to publicly concede that she could have been wrong about Anna's innocence, Leo urges her not to throw her career away while there is still uncertainty - however, her father puts a spanner in the works when he sells Nikki's story to the papers, in order to secure money to clear his debt. Meanwhile, Harry tries to identify two bodies found buried in the garden of a house, and allotment, owned by a retired Spanish couple. However, he soon discovers that they are connected to his colleague's troubling case, which may or may not provide the ammunition to either clear or implicate Anna in murder.
Nikki investigates the discovery of human bones on a former Travellers' site and realises they could be the remains of a senior police officer's missing teenage daughter, Clara Young. However, her forensic analysis raises even greater questions, when she discovers that she has found the remains of two bodies - which casts doubt on the guilt of the chief suspect.
Meanwhile, Harry is assigned to an insurance case that takes a peculiar twist, when it is revealed that the victim may have died of CJD, contracted through a blood transfusion operation in India. When the main suspect in the investigation into the human remains is murdered, Nikki feels she is being shut out of the case and is left unsure who to trust. However, her lone enquiries bring her into greater danger, when she discovers that someone close to the Travellers may be responsible for the killings. Meanwhile, Harry learns he has been deceived, and believes he has no option but to pursue the truth alone, in an attempt to get justice for the victims of the scam.
Timothy Prager. Keenan is finally caught for statutory rape of the young girl that was murdered, when they test DNA against the child that she was carrying when she was murdered. However, the gang life goes on without Keenan, when the next leader is seen recruiting a young boy into the group. Things become muddled when Harry sees the Detective Superintendent investigating the murder entering Holly's home after he visited her just a few minutes earlier. She is later found dead in her bed. An armed police raid at a terraced house in North London sees two suspected terrorists killed, along with a police officer.
Nikki doubts the officers' accounts of events after carrying out the post mortems, as the forensic evidence just does not add up. The case then takes an unexpected turn when it transpires one of the surviving policemen is having an affair with his dead colleague's wife. Nikki and Harry form a bond as they search for the truth, but accusations fly and paranoia is heightened when another terror suspect dies in hospital. Meanwhile, Harry uses cutting-edge techniques to uncover the identity of one of the suspected terrorists, and soon discovers, much to his surprise, that she was a police officer, working undercover for the drug squad.
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When the body of a member of the Jewish Hasidic community, Yitshok Hassam, is discovered, the team agree to perform a 'dry' post mortem on the victim to respect the wishes of his faith. A forensic link is found to a group of Polish labourers, but Harry begins to wonder whether the victim's wife is hiding something and decides to carry out a full autopsy to determine the time of death. When another Jewish body is also found, Harry becomes convinced that his and Yitshok's deaths are linked. DNA testing suggests the killer is Hasidic, but the police refuse to believe the claims and demand that Harry be taken off the case.
However, Nikki decides to stand by her colleague and the pair make some shocking discoveries after re-testing all of the DNA samples. Dudi Appleton , Jim Keeble. A boy's body is discovered near his school, and a search is launched when the classmate he was last seen with, Liam, is reported missing. After it transpires the deceased was abused and had traces of an unknown toxic chemical in his body, the youngsters' headmaster, a man who used to teach Nikki, becomes a suspect - and a second corpse is found.
The search for Liam resumes and a link is discovered between the dead schoolboy's stepfather and the missing child. Meanwhile, Nikki performs a post mortem on the second body and finds traces of the same unknown toxin present in the first. Leo and Harry try to identify and locate the source of the chemical in a bid to find out where Liam is being held and are led to a container hidden in the woods.
The team flies out to Zambia to investigate the death of a doctor, Rachel Gates, who had gone missing two weeks earlier. It transpires that she was volunteering as a practitioner for a mission and had believed a number of refugees died in suspicious circumstances. Leo and Nikki carry out a post-mortem, but their findings throw the case into disarray. The bones originally thought to be Rachel's are identified as another victim, a local woman, and the search for her body begins.
When Rachel's friend Bethany is found dead inside a nightclub, Nikki is arrested for attempting to carry out a post-mortem on the girl against her mother's wishes. Harry learns foul play was involved in Bethany's death, and Leo has the local water samples tested - with surprising results. Harry and Nikki are tasked to investigate the death of insurance investigator William Byfield, who appears to have committed suicide by suffocating from fumes from an exhaust pipe piped into his car.
An initial examination appears to confirm that theory, until lab assistant Charlie re-examines the stomach contents, and faints at the smell of cyanide being present - suggesting that the deceased may have been poisoned, not stabbed. Meanwhile, Leo is confronted by Byfield's replacement, Clare Ambler, after she discovers that Byfield's last case was investigating the untimely death of Stephen Connelly, a healthy middle-aged man.
However, despite his signature being on the post mortem report, Leo has no recollection of ever performing one - and nor is there any record that Connelly's body ever arrived at the Lyell Centre. Believing that Leo has committed fraud on behalf of the deceased's relatives, Clare has Leo investigated by the police - but her crusade is short lived when Leo is smashed on the back of the head and left for dead outside his house.
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It doesn't help the case when Harry and the Connelly widow have an affair. She is briefly suspected of murdering her husband and the situation turns from bad to worse when the body of coroner's assistant David Levin is found in the boot of Connelly's widow's car. Thaddeus O'Sullivan. Stock banker Bridget Flannery is found dead at the bottom of her stairs.
However, with the crime scene having been disturbed by the family's dog and a blundering WPC, Harry and Nikki struggle to decide whether her death was accidental - or if somebody repeatedly struck her over the face, causing her to fall. Suspicion quickly falls on the victim's husband, media personality Tom Flannery, who has an old grudge with the police, which appears to be the deciding factor in whether or not to charge him with his wife's murder.
In an attempt to prove Tom's innocence, his lawyer asks Nikki to perform a second post mortem - but the results are less than satisfactory for Harry, whose evidence appears to contradict Nikki's point for point. As the pair are unable to decide cause and motive of death, they find themselves battling it out in a courtroom.
But when photos are leaked to the press regarding the death of Flannery's first wife, Nikki starts to doubt her own evidence - and believes that she may have interpreted the case from completely the wrong angle. Meanwhile, with Leo still recovering from his attack, Harry decides to use the situation to his advantage, and suspecting that the fate of Flannery's first wife Olga, may also lie in Flannery's hands, he persuades Leo to put him in touch with a professor in Prague, only to discover that Olga was also murdered - leaving him in no doubt that Flannery is their chief suspect.
Robb , Frances Tomelty , Diana Hardcastle. Leo's first case on his return to work involves the shattered body of a young woman, Ruth Gardiner, found below a block of derelict flats, having apparently fallen from the roof. The post-mortem indicates suicide, but Leo realises he missed vital signs when he uncovers evidence that the girl had been shot in the head before being dragged to the roof and thrown off, leading the police to reopen the case.
When DI Neill seems reluctant to pursue the possibility that Ruth may have been an informant for an undercover police officer, Phil Nelson, Leo starts to wonder if Ruth's death is part of a cover-up. When a gun is found near Ruth's squat, investigations lead Neill to Alex Webb, an employee of a local car dealership.
Harry, meanwhile, is forced to confront some uncomfortable family secrets when an old family friend, Mary Bradburn, shows up at the Lyell Centre for the post-mortem of her husband, James. Discovering that James had taped a plastic bag over his head in order to suffocate himself, Harry is forced to come to terms with some of his own family revelations, when Nikki persuades him to finally look into the circumstances of his own father's suicide.
Meanwhile, Leo discovers that Phil Nelson is just one of three aliases used by Peter Carmody and realises that he is linked to another two murders - including that of Alex Webb. Farren Blackburn. When a student suicide occurs on a university campus, Leo liaises with the Dean and investigating officer DC Saich after it emerges the deceased, Jason Renfrew, was the victim of bullying. Concern grows when a gun and live ammunition are discovered in the dead boy's locker, and the contents from a memory card found in his stomach reveal files containing photos of students, some of whom he named as his tormentors.
Before the team can investigate further, their fears become a horrible reality as one of the main campus buildings comes under attack by a rampaging shooter, trapping Harry and Nikki inside. All Leo can do is watch helplessly via CCTV security cameras as his colleagues try to help the wounded. Specialist firearms officers storm the building and find suspected shooter Scott Weston, lying on the floor, with a bullet wound to the head.
As the wounded and dead are wheeled out, Harry stays to help the paramedic attending to Weston. Unable to help, Nikki returns to the pathology lab, but realises she is not alone, when student Neil Corrigan enters the lab and locks the doors behind him. As Leo starts preliminary post mortems on the victims in a temporary mortuary in the university's sports hall, he soon realises that there were two guns used in the incident.
Meanwhile, with Neil pointing a gun at Nikki, she starts to work out events as he slowly confides in her, and it soon becomes apparent Weston had a much bigger agenda than the shooting - blowing up the entire campus with a number of chemical bombs. Paul Wilmshurst. Nikki returns to her childhood home in South Africa, after she is hired by a private security firm to investigate the cold case of the disappearance of five young men in the s, known as the Kensington Five.
However, upon excavating the crime scene, she discovers the remains of six bodies, and begins to wonder if the culprit has told everything. Meanwhile, Harry and Leo are also in Cape Town for a scientific conference, but are waylaid by respective requests to lend their expertise to the examination of a woman's body dragged out of a bay, and the effort to reverse the deportation of a Zimbabwean asylum seeker, Kudzai, who was tortured in her home country.
When Kudzai is recruited by a corrupt immigration official to work at a local brothel, Leo discovers a link between the dead woman from the bay and the owner of the brothel itself. As Nikki manages to confirm that the skeletons she is asked to examine are the remains of the Kensington Five, she decides to pay a visit to informant Captain Brackenfell - but soon discovers that a corrupt politician, who is a good friend of her ex-business partner, was the man whose information lead to the murders, she is left to make a difficult decision about her love life.
And as Harry and Leo get closer to the truth, they discover that there are plenty of untold, dirty secrets held deep within the African countryside. The day after Professor Silverlake, a consultant neurologist at the Dartmouth London hospital, raised his voice at three patients for smoking and drinking on the premises, all three are found murdered in their hospital beds.
Silverlake, apparently the last doctor to visit the ward, later goes berserk with a shotgun after he is accused of the killings and is shot dead by a police marksman. Leo and Harry believe they have a cut and dried case, but when the ward's night nurse is also murdered, realise they could have a cover-up on their hands. Meanwhile, Nikki is deeply upset at having to perform an autopsy on an eight-year-old girl who is suspected to have been raped and murdered by convicted criminal Jason Bodie, a man upon whom Professor Silverlake once performed live-saving surgery.
Whilst Bodie is committed as unfit to plead, Silverlake's daughter Naomi asks Leo and Harry to help clear her father's name of murder. As Nikki's mental instability over the girls' death worsens, Harry and Leo are forced to get her psychiatric help. But as the true identity of the perpetrator of all of the murders is discovered, it becomes a race against time to save Nikki's life and prove that Naomi is responsible.
He soon realises, however, that Bentley may have had an accomplice, who is still at large. This is confirmed when investigating officer Sonia Hardwick finds a letter to Bentley from his boyfriend in the original case file, supposedly buried by the original investigating officer, ACC Maynard. Leo soon deduces that Bentley's lover, Stephen Fisher, may be responsible for all of the murders.
He was responsible for Jodie's death, whose body was buried on his parents' ground after killing her when she found out about Stephen and Bentley's secret affair and threatened to tell his mother. Six weeks later, the sergeant was killed in battle. He is warned by British diplomat Duncan McBurney to avoid getting entangled in Anna's activities, and when Anna is murdered, suspicion falls on his shoulders, and he is forced to go on the run as the police appear to be in league with the Ukrainian gang he believes are responsible for her death.
Leo arrives from Britain to find Harry, and soon learns that Anna was pregnant. Assisted by Janos, an ex-Communist, Harry arranges to meet Leo at the ferry terminal, but Anna's murderer gets there first, shoots Janos dead and corners Harry. Leo arrives to hear gunshots and finds a burning body on the promenade. Nikki is soon warned of the trouble and flies out to join the team, however, the police soon identify the burning body as Harry's.
However, soon after, Nikki and Leo receive a mysterious phone message inviting them to a rendezvous. There they find Harry, who tells them how his would-be murderer was accidentally killed, and that he planted his own possessions on the burning body to enable him to evade the police.
The team continue to investigate Anna's murder, and question a prostitute, Marina, in the hope of finding the motive and exposing her killers. A scam to steal prostitutes' babies and sell them to childless couples is finally revealed, and the police who behaved so suspiciously turn out to be undercover officers involved in catching the villains - whose leader and mastermind turns out to be diplomat McBurney.
James Strong. Nikki, Harry and Leo are called to the Dutch Embassy in the wake of a shooting, in which an unidentified gunman has shot dead three people - police constable Ryan Barlow, Dutch ambassador Peter Van Buren's sister, Trudy, and a third victim, only identified as Van Buren's personal bodyguard. During the shooting, Van Buren's daughter, Klara, is also injured, and his eight-year-old grandson, and Klara's son, Jack, disappears without trace.
With the revelation that Van Buren's son, Yacoub, also disappeared without trace fifteen years ago, and that his brother, Diedrick, was killed in a car accident three years ago in Nigeria, Nikki starts to believe that one lone assailant may be responsible for the 'curse' that has tainted the Van Buren family for the past several years. Klara manages to survive her injuries, alongside her boyfriend, and fellow police constable, Craig Whitehead, but her shock revelation that the gunman was in fact none other than her missing sibling, Yacoub, sends the police and the pathologists on a wild goose chase.
However, the news coverage has a strange effect on Van Buren's au pair Mary Olivant, who is later found hanged from a tree on Hampstead Heath, having committed suicide. And when the case looking into Yacoub's disappearance is re-opened, Nikki discovers that the third victim may not be Van Buren's bodyguard, and the team come close to uncovering a dark family secret - until the Dutch Embassy throw them off the case, and another pathologist, James Sabiston, who trained with Leo and Harry at the Lyell centre, is called in to carry out the postmortems on the deceased police officer, Trudy Van Buren and the questionable identity of the third victim.
When it is discovered that Van Buren's brother Diedrick, who had supposedly died three years ago, is the third victim, the team open a whole can of worms, including the possibility that Van Buren was responsible for the death and disappearance of his son. The team attend a triple murder at a farmhouse, where the investigating detective, DI Connie James, wastes no time making her presence felt.
The case is proving difficult for Leo, however, whose mind is in turmoil following the suicide of an old friend. Harry persuades Connie to disobey orders and test DNA evidence from the original investigation, and Janet is called in to help build the personality of the female serial killer. Leo is still troubled by the suicide of his friend Lizzie Frazer, prompting Nikki to dig deeper into the murder of the woman's sister ten years before.
The episode is partly based on the Phantom of Heilbronn case. The double-murder investigation reveals more about the tangled lives of the inhabitants of Magnolia Drive, involving the couple, the husband's brother, the ex-wife, the neighbour and her son. Harry makes a significant discovery about the dead woman's stepson Charlie, found lying in a coma at the crime scene, whilst uncovering a deep dark family secret which played a part in the sequence of events leading to the deaths.
Meanwhile Leo sets out to recreate the shape of the mystery weapon, with the help of forensic scientist Gill Bailey. Edward Bennett. The team continues the investigations which led Nikki to examine the church he visited as a boy, Mears is furious that the police have been made aware of the undiscovered bodies and he sends Annie out to search for her daughter who he claimed he knew where she was.
Eventually, he agrees to talk, but only to Nikki. Leo admits to Janet that he no longer loves her anymore. Leo visits old college friend Sean Delaney at his psychiatric care centre in Essex, where one of the patients, Eve, was found dead in her bed. Although the coroner ruled a verdict of sudden death syndrome, Delaney is not convinced and asks Leo to investigate. Suspicion soon falls on the dead girl's father, who has lost the family fortune and his wife — but the pathologist runs into problems when the local detective sergeant gives him a less-than-warm welcome, making it clear she is suspicious of his motives.
The team delves deeper into the circumstances surrounding Eve's death. Leo confronts the girl's mother and comes close to what actually happened the night before her daughter died, while Harry and Nikki track down the nun who performed the exorcism - and are shocked by what they find. Psychiatrist Sean turns his attention to Eve's brother John, who believes he is also possessed by the demons that haunted his sister - is history about to repeat itself? Or, more crucially, does anyone care? The gang of pimps uses a mini-cab taxi service as a front.
They lure two more young school girls into the business, but one man takes a liking to one, Hannah, and tries to save them both, though he dies while trying to escape with the girls from another man. When Hannah visits the morgue to see the man who saved her earlier, Nikki attempts to convince her to provide the police with information. This results in the capture of all except the leader, who is later beaten to death by Shannon's devastated stepfather, who watched the video of her rape on her phone.
John Briggs Tim Pigott-Smith , a wealthy, ageing confectionery company owner, is found dead in his London hotel suite. Nikki listens to the arguments put forward by forensic scientist Jack Hodgson David Caves to prove to sceptical DS Gold that suspicious circumstances are surrounding the death. It is learned that Briggs was losing a desperate fight to prevent the sale of his ailing company to investors. Suspicion falls on a "call-girl" seen leaving the hotel, but Briggs' lawyer Annette Kelly reveals that the girl, Deana, is, in fact, Geraldine's daughter, adopted when her mother was sixteen.
Evidently, someone is leaking information to the press, and Jack accuses DC Gus Cook, resulting in the two fighting. When Deana's body is found by the Thames, Jack deduces she was murdered and finds her mobile phone, which shows she was in league with Trenter; DNA proves she was not, in fact, Geraldine's daughter. Annette Kelly reveals information about Briggs and Trenter to Geraldine. When she too is found murdered, Geraldine is suspected. When questioned by the police, Geraldine reveals her daughter was a product of rape by her uncle, Philip, and she was forced to give up the baby. Then the company's value falls to the point where the primary bidder, Schwartzman, can pick it up for next to nothing.
When Philip learns the extent of Trenter's double-dealing, he kills him; Trenter is subsequently revealed to be the murderer of both Deana and Annette Kelly. Jack insists on bringing along his trusted technician, Clarissa Liz Carr. Richard Davidson . Richard Clark. Nikki and Jack investigate the death of two women, who have been tied up and tortured in a basement. The trail of evidence leads eventually to a research institute where Lucas Ballinger is employed. Meanwhile, Leo becomes involved in the case of a young woman imprisoned for the murder of her baby, as a result of a direct approach from the baby's father, who wants to avoid having his older son taken into care whilst not wishing to incriminate himself.
When a third woman is killed in a similar manner to the first two, the team discover a link with both Hearns, an ex-soldier, and Ballinger, who goes on the run. The investigation is complicated by Jack's feelings for the investigating police officer, DI Reid, a former lover whom he suspects of having previously betrayed him by tampering with forensic evidence. Nikki, at first sympathetic towards Reid, changes her view when she is trapped in a building set on fire by Hearns to conceal the third murder and Reid fails to help her. Ballinger tracks down and kills Hearns, then goes after his boss at the research institute, Dr.
Fell, who is behind Hearns' activities and the release of anthrax spores to create demand for a vaccine manufactured by his company. Ballinger was also unaware that his wife was three months pregnant which nearly caused him to kill Dr. Nikki and Jack see through Reid when she begins an affair with a senior officer, and track Ballinger to a park, where he reveals that he was blackmailed by Hearns into participating in the release of the spores because Hearns had kidnapped his wife, one of the murdered women.
Nikki tried to talk to him and managed to extract the bag which looked suspicious to the police before an impatient Reid brings in a police sniper to kill Ballinger and is finally shamed by the failure to find any weapon among his personal effects. When a pub landlady is stabbed to death and her little finger is cut off by the killer, Nikki seeks to prove the innocence of the dead woman's husband, Roly Henderson, against the police's mounting evidence to suggest his involvement.
Concerned for the couple's young daughter, Nikki convinces Jack and Leo that this is in fact the latest victim of a psychopathic serial killer, and, when Jack discovers that the intransigent DI Kate Warren has falsified evidence under the influence of her father, a senior police officer, he joins in the search.
Under pressure from her father, DI Warren arrests Henderson for the murder of his wife. Nikki visits another convicted man who was imprisoned for murdering his wife and she finds that the couple could have been attacked by the same man. After further investigation of the evidence to this murder, the team pursue other suspects and suspicion falls on Alan Lane, an ex-policeman who has already served a prison sentence for the murder of his own wife and currently lives on the farm and sells hiking equipment out of a van.
Nikki visits Alan's mother-in-law who informs her of Alan's behaviour before and during their marriage and that her husband was found murdered, and that she was asked to move out after Alan and her daughter moved into their farm. Nikki tracks down Anne Percival, the retired detective involved in the case. Unknown to the team, Percival is aware that Lane's wife Imogen is not dead and is assisting Imogen in protecting herself and her daughter from discovery by Lane. When Percival contacts Imogen, she felt it was necessary to kill Lane in order to protect Imogen.
She went to the family farm where he lives, however Lane overpowers her and tortures Percival to death in an attempt to discover Imogen's whereabouts, then kidnaps his own daughter, Karen, to lure Imogen back to him. When confronted by the police, he shoots DI Warren dead. Nikki saves Jack's life when Lane arrives at the scene of the kidnap when Lane attack them as they are freeing Karen. While being taken away, Lane shows that he still cares for Imogen, who remains terrified of him as before.
Henderson is reunited with his daughter. Stephen Gallagher. When Tom Hancock's son Peter dies of cancer, Tom seeks an explanation and turns to Leo to help him find the cause. At about the same time, the decomposing body of Colin Connor is discovered in an old nursing home, about to be converted into ecologically-friendly apartments while the adjoining farmland is to be used for affordable housing.
Behind the scheme is Lord Embleton, a government minister who is attracted to Nikki after meeting her at a function. Embleton's father, Sir William, tries to discourage him from the scheme, and is in secret contact with a sinister government "advisor", David Loader.
Leo is intrigued by the post-mortem discovery that both Colin and Peter had the extremely rare Fanconi's Syndrome and begins to think that Tom Hancock's suspicions may be well-founded. Jack finds evidence to suggest that Colin was in the disused building with a companion, who left him to die after his arm became trapped in a conduit while trying to steal copper wire. Suspicion falls on Colin's employer, Brian Blackburn, and his son Derren, who appears to have undergone a personality change since his association with Colin.
Leo and Jack visit the deserted farm to look for evidence of contamination but are taken into custody by soldiers who claim that the land is in use as an army firing range. On their return, Jack scrapes their shoes and finds evidence of groundwater contamination. Leo is contacted by the farm's former owner, George Ryder, who says he has information about the cause of the contamination, but when they attempt to meet at the old nursing home, Leo finds Ryder's dead body and sees Derren running away.
In the ensuing police pursuit, Derren falls off a ladder and dies; the post-mortem reveals that he was suffering from similar symptoms to Colin and Peter. Jack suspects that Derren was not responsible for Ryder's death, and finds evidence that implicates David Loader. Meanwhile, after Leo's house is burgled, he is suspended for allegedly losing confidential files, which he said he would never bring home and suggests that this was a set-up. Nikki tries to get help from Lord Embleton, with whom she is having an affair, but Embleton's father tries to stop him becoming involved with her.
Leo seeks help from Tom Hancock, and they go to the farm again and discover the source of the radioactive contamination: a tunnelfire with a train carrying a nuclear warhead. In there, they also found evidence that children have been visiting the area to play and spend time. When Leo finds a video in Tom's basement revealing that his son and several other local boys had been in the tunnel without realising the danger, Tom takes a parcel of radioactive dust and threatens Sir William, who shows no remorse for covering up the disaster.
Lord Embleton and David Loader enter Embleton's private office, not knowing that Tom has booby-trapped it, and both are covered in a fatal dose of radioactive dust from the tunnel. In the final scene, Leo walks back into his office, watched by Nikki, Jack and Clarissa. After human remains are found at an Afghan water project, the brother of missing soldier Dan Lambert begs Leo to go to Afghanistan to prepare the body for repatriation and discover whatever they can about how he died.
Nikki and Jack go with him, and almost immediately encounter apparent hostility from private security guards working at the site. Their leader, Sean Nugent, is reluctant to allow contact with three Taliban prisoners, and appears to be losing control of his men when one of the prisoners is found hanged in their cell; Nikki suspects that one of the other guards is responsible, and discovers that one of the prisoners, "Karim", is an Englishman.
Leo develops a relationship with Fawzia, the Afghan charity worker responsible for the water project, and is assaulted one night outside the compound. Evidence begins to point towards Lambert having been killed by friendly fire. Clarissa interviews Scott Lambert again, and discovers that Nugent was an NCO with the original military team of which Dan was a member; her e-mail is concealed from Leo by Nugent.
While Jack is investigating decomposition rates in the local climatic conditions, he comes across further parts of Lambert's body. In the meantime, Leo and Nikki are accidentally locked in the cell with Karim and the other Taliban prisoner, and Karim appears to confess to having been involved in Lambert's killing. After Nugent takes the prisoners to be handed over to the local authorities, Jack realises that the body parts are not Lambert's at all, and that "Karim" is in fact Lambert himself. By the time he alerts the guards, the prisoners have murdered Nugent and escaped.
As Leo walks him away from the site, the explosives are detonated and both are killed. Top-flight footballer Isaac Dreyfus' days at the top are numbered when a sex tape links him to the brutal murder of a young woman, threatening to destroy his reputation and marriage.
Nikki struggles to come to terms with Leo's death following the arrival of the new Lyell Centre boss, pathologist Thomas Chamberlain. However, her feelings surface when DI John Leighton and DS Anne Burchett demand results in two unsolved cases - a mother and son murdered in their wealthy London home and the disfigured body of a young woman. Footballer Isaac Dreyfus desperately fights to prove his innocence, whilst disillusioned Adam Freedman turns to a mysterious source for help to avenge the murder of his wife and child.
Under scrutiny from the press, the police are determined to nail their prime suspect and pile pressure on The Lyell Centre to deliver results. However, when Nikki questions the motive behind the murders, a re-examination of the Freedman crime scene leads Jack to make a startling discovery.
Graham Mitchell. Nikki delivers ground-breaking testimony in the high-profile appeal court case of David Bennetto, a convicted killer who has spent the last six years behind bars for the murder of two gay teenagers. But bitter DI Rachel Klein remains unconvinced that she caused a miscarriage of justice and cannot hide her contempt, especially when another young man is found dead bearing the same hallmarks of the previous murders.
Meanwhile, Nikki's professionalism is brought into question due to her increasingly close relationship with lawyer Greg Walker Tobias Menzies. Nikki's professional reputation is on the line when her romantic involvement with lawyer Greg Walker leads her face-to-face with a raging Bennetto.
Thomas is under mounting pressure from DI Rachel Klein and the Home Office as he battles to save the Lyell Centre's reputation in the midst of a media storm. Grieving for the death of his murdered son, newspaper hack Peter Masham strikes an unlikely deal with Bennetto's brother-in-law. Meanwhile, Jack and Clarissa uncover the true identity of murder victim Byron Lee. Nikki and Jack head to Scotland to help earnest rural detective DS Jason Ross investigate the chilling murder of a lap dancer found in a remote forest. As more human remains are unearthed in the forest, it becomes horrifyingly apparent that a dangerous serial killer is at large.
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