FRIENDS and colleagues today paid tribute to a former detective who worked on some of Blackpool’s most infamous cases.
Paul Buschini – who headed up Blackpool’s Force Major Investigation unit – died on Saturday after battling cancer.
And today friends of the popular former officer, who was also well-known for his exploits on the rugby pitch, paid tribute to him.
Mr Buschini, 55, was a life member of Fleetwood RUFC, and club member Ian Cameron said: “He was a top bloke, the club is devastated about what’s happened.
“He was a great guy, a good player and he was always good fun to be around.
“He had cancer but he was still coming down to games and he always looked well.
“I’ve been going to the club for 30 years and he was a life-member so he has always been involved.
“He was the life and soul of the party and he was always good to go away with.”
Mr Buschini played as a prop for the club in the 1970s and 1980s, and was also a regular on the pitch for Lancashire Police’s team.
As one of the force’s most senior detectives, Det Supt Buschini investigated some of the resort’s most high profile murders in the 1990s and early 2000s. He was the lead investigating officer when Blackpool teenager Charlene Downes disappeared in 2003 – a missing person inquiry which later became a murder hunt.
And in 1997 Mr Buschini also took the lead when the headless body of teenager Christopher Hartley was found in the resort. Psychopath Stuart Diamond was jailed for life for Mr Hartley’s murder in 1999.
Lancashire Police’s head of crime, Det Chief Supt Clive Tattum, said: “Paul was a true gentleman and an incredibly talented and dedicated detective. He will be sadly missed by his colleagues here in Lancashire and our thoughts are with his family at this sad time.”
After leaving the force in 2006, Mr Buschini served as a police advisor to the Government of Trinidad and Tobago before joining Dublin’s Garda Síochána Ombudsman Commission as director of investigations.