Reward offered after body of man missing for 9 years found in freezer of wine bar

"His body may have been in the freezer for a number of years," police said.

October 20, 2023, 7:00 AM

LONDON -- Police in London are offering a "substantial reward" for information regarding the death of a man whose body was found in the basement freezer of a disused wine bar.

Roy Bigg went missing in February 2012 and his remains were discovered in October 2021 by construction workers who had been working on the premises of the site in northeast London.

"Just over two years ago, on October 15 2021, police were called to the basement of a building that was formerly Simpson's Wine Bar on Romford Road in Forest Gate where Roy Bigg's remains had been discovered," according to a statement from the Metropolitan Police Press Office on Friday. "We believe that his body may have been in the freezer for a number of years, and that he was aged about 70 when he died."

In this photo released by the Metropolitan Police, Roy Biggs is shown.
Metropolitan Police

Following more than two years of investigation following the grisly discovery of Bigg's body, police are refocusing their efforts on finding out what happened to Bigg in February 2012 and are now offering a "substantial reward of up to £20,000 ($24,260) for information leading to the arrest, charge and prosecution of those responsible for the murder of Roy Bigg."

"It's now been more than two years since Roy was found. Although our investigation, and previous media appeals have provided us with information about Roy's life, we still need your help to identify who is responsible," said Detective Chief Inspector Kelly Allen of the Met's Specialist Crime Command.

In this screen grab from Google Maps Street View, the old location of Simpson's Wine Bar is shown on Romford Road in the Forest Gate section of East London.
Google Maps Street View

"Where was he between 2012 and 2021? To date there have been no confirmed sightings of him in this nine year period. Can you help?" Allen continued. "Anything you can tell us may prove invaluable in helping us discover what happened."

A post-mortem examination found Bigg's cause of death to be inconclusive and the remains were ultimately identified through his dental records.

Even though he had been missing since Feb. 2012, the examination did not give a time period of how long he may have been dead for.

Anyone who knew Bigg or has any information on what may have happened to him is asked to contact the Metropolitan Police Incident Room and may remain completely anonymous if they choose.