Police have confirmed human remains unearthed at a Fife industrial site are not those of missing men Allan Bryant Jr and Kenneth Jones.
The news was announced late on Monday night following an agonising wait for each man’s families, who have spent years searching for their loved ones.
Despite the post-mortem concluding the remains did not belong to either “long-term missing person”, the case is being treated unexplained by Police Scotland and the remains and cause of death are still “unexplained”.
A “highly intricate” investigation is still taking place, officers said.
Bones of a man were disturbed by young boys on Whitehill Road on Sunday September 27, close to Mr Bryant’s family home and the nightclub he was last seen in on November 3 2013.
Detective Chief Inspector Kevin Houliston, of Police Scotland’s Major Investigation Team (MIT), said: “The families of long-term missing people in the local area have been informed that the remains are not those of their loved-ones and officers continue to support them at this difficult time.
“This is a complex and highly intricate investigation and we’re working to find out who this is and how they came to be there.
“The death remains unexplained but if anyone has any information that may help our enquiries then please call Police Scotland on 101, quoting incident 2692 of Sunday September 27 2020.”
Officers spent almost a week conducting forensic tests at the remote industrial estate on the outskirts of Glenrothes where the remains were found.
Many of the buildings are derelict and the area is heavily overgrown, which is understood to have hindered the search.
Allan Bryant was 23 when he vanished. He has not been seen since leaving Styx nightclub in Glenrothes, just over a mile away from where the discovery was made, despite one of the biggest missing persons searches ever undertaken by police in Scotland.
The case featured on the BBC’s Crimewatch Roadshow when Allan’s parents appeared with a senior detective and appealed to the public information.
The family of Kenneth Jones, who went missing on the same date in the town in 1998, have also been kept updated since the remains were found.