Three boys arrested over Basildon burned-out car murder
Three teenagers have been arrested on suspicion of murder after a man's body was found in a burned-out car.
Vilson Meshi, 30, was found dead inside an Audi A4 on Pincey Mead near Pitsea Road, Basildon, on Saturday.
Two 16-year-old boys and a 15-year-old, all from the town, were arrested on Wednesday night.
They are still being questioned over the death, police said. A post-mortem examination found he died from smoke inhalation.
Mr Meshi's friend, Anthony Chooah, has described the victim as a "cuddly bear".
Mr Chooah said he was at a loss to understand why anyone would kill him and was struggling to come to terms with the attack.
"He was probably one of the nicest people you could ever meet," he said.
Mr Chooah added: "I've been spending a lot of the last four to five days in constant tears, having anxiety attacks.
"He was a big cuddly bear... but someone has taken his life."