All but two of the dead were pulled from the ruins of the collapsed Weiguan Golden Dragon residential complex, a 17-story building.

The latest update by Taiwan's Interior Ministry said rescuers pulled out 33 bodies yesterday and another eight early today.

About nine people are believed to be missing and presumed trapped under the rubble. Rescuers were still scouring the site to find them.

Authorities detained the building's developer Lin Ming-hui and two architects this week on suspicion of negligent homicide amid accusations his firm cut corners in the construction.

Tainan city officials said they will inspect several dozen other developments built by Lin, as well as other buildings in the Weiguan compound that did not collapse.

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