This Is London : Spy 'died in holdall after sex game'

Monday, September 20, 2010

Spy 'died in holdall after sex game'

Atex Feed | September 20, 2010

Detectives investigating the death of MI6 codebreaker Gareth Williams are searching for a second person who they believe may have been present when he died.

Police suspect the agent may have been engaged in a sex game that went wrong and are moving away from the possibility that he was murdered. One theory is that the 31-year-old had engaged in a sadomasochistic game.

His naked body was found in a holdall bag in his Pimlico flat last month.

The First Post : MI6 man ‘locked himself in his holdall’. Oh yes?

Monday, September 20, 2010

MI6 man ‘locked himself in his holdall’. Oh yes?

Latest theory about the death of Gareth Williams is preposterous, say security experts

By Jack Bremer | September 20, 2010

National security experts reached by The First Post last night have reacted with a mixture of astonishment, ridicule and suspicion to the idea that Gareth Williams, the MI6 agent found dead in a London flat last month, padlocked himself in a zip-up holdall in search of a sexual thrill and then suffocated because he couldn't get out again.

"With all due respect to Williams and his family, I haven't stopped laughing since I read the paper at breakfast," one former agent said. "It's more than unlikely - it's preposterous."

The hypothesis was reported by the Sunday Times, quoting anonymous "security sources".

The paper claimed police had established that Williams, a single man, had a record of engaging in autoerotic practices, and that the greatest likelihood was that he had died as result of an experiment going wrong.

According to the Sunday Times' source, police recently invited an escapologist to show them whether it was possible to lock oneself in a holdall and get out again. The escapologist duly climbed into the bag, padlocked it from the inside and then unzipped it using a sharp-tipped pen.

Convinced by this - and without addressing whether a 31-year-old codebreaker would necessarily have the skills honed over the years by a seasoned escapologist - the police were apparently persuaded that Williams must have got into the bag and then suffocated in the August heat before he could release himself.

"The emerging background is something almost certainly autoerotic," a "senior official" told the paper.

The "emerging background", to coin a phrase, for those observing this case unfold, is that the police are at a total loss as to how Williams died.

This is either because forensics are revealing nothing - it is possible he was murdered by an enemy using undetectable poison, for instance - or because someone somewhere has succeeded in throwing the police off the scent.

According to The First Post's security sources, there are good reasons why government agencies might want this investigation to "go away". These include the possibility that what Williams was working on - and what might have led to his murder - is simply too sensitive to be allowed to go public. It is also possible that his employers slipped up in some respect.

One security consultant who spoke anonymously to The First Post said he had been surprised from the start at the considerable delay - at least a week, longer according to some reports - before anyone was alerted to Williams's absence.

This did not tally with our source's experience of working for British intelligence: he said the slightest hiccup in established routine would bring instant inquiries.

Another source was puzzled by the differing messages being leaked - mainly to the Sunday Times - by those claiming to be close to the investigation. "One minute we're looking for a suspicious couple of Mediterranean appearance, the next we're being told he could have been poisoned by polonium-210 like Alexander Litvinenko - now we're expected to believe that he locked himself in a suitcase."

The facts are that Gareth Williams was a GCHQ codebreaker on secondment to MI6, where his work made him privy to highly classified anti-terrorism material. On August 23, at least a week after he had last been seen, his body was found in a North Face holdall in the bath at his top-floor apartment in Pimlico, a short walk from MI6 headquarters.

Yes, there are instances of auto-asphyxiation fetishists accidentally killing themselves. But invariably these cases involve hanging, not climbing into airtight suitcases.

As Crispin Black wrote for The First Post a week ago, the discovery of Gareth Williams's corpse bore all the hallmarks of a murder by someone who had killed before.

The perpetrator had prepared the victim for transport, put the bag in the bath where any final traces of the crime could most easily be washed away, and was then presumably interrupted before being able to remove the body for disposal.

Irish Independent : Naked spy found dead in a bag 'was probably playing sex game'

Monday, September 20, 2010

Naked spy found dead in a bag 'was probably playing sex game'

By Duncan Gardham in London | September 20, 2010

THE spy whose naked body was found in a sports bag in an empty bath was probably involved in an unusual sex game, police now believe.

Officers have ruled out almost every other possibility. They have come to the view that Gareth Williams probably died after climbing into the bag which was then locked by another person. It is unclear whether he did so on instructions from the other person or was locked in at his own request.

However, detectives believe that he was probably indulging in a sadomasochistic game in which he got a thrill from being helpless.

It is likely that once locked and left in the bag, he died from a combination of causes, including suffocation and dehydration -- difficult to identify in a post-mortem inquiry. The red holdall was made from a laminate material and had reinforced seams, making it hot and almost impossible to escape from.

Mr Williams's top-floor flat in Pimlico, central London, is likely to have been hot in the August weather, causing him to pass out.

The North Face bag was padlocked from the outside and officers believe another person was supposed to return to the flat to release him. But when they came back they found his dead body. Scotland Yard is still seeking a Mediterranean couple aged between 20 and 30, who were let into the spy's flat late one evening in June or July.

"They haven't come forward and we have to ask ourselves why that would be," one source said. Officers have been unwilling to ascribe motives to the killing before investigating all the options. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

- Duncan Gardham in London

Irish Independent

The Australian : Sex-game spy Gareth Williams suffocated

Monday, September 20, 2010

Sex-game spy Gareth Williams suffocated

From The Sunday Times | September 20, 2010

BRITISH spy Gareth Williams suffocated because he was unable to escape after padlocking himself inside a bag, officials say.

The code-breaker, whose naked body was found in a locked bag in his London flat, had not been murdered but died during a bizarre "autoerotic" experiment, security sources have disclosed.

Government officials monitoring the police case say they believe Williams, 31, suffocated because he was unable to get out of the bag.

Williams worked on highly classified anti-terrorism material at GCHQ, the government's eavesdropping centre at Cheltenham, southern England, and had moved to London for a one-year assignment with MI6, the overseas intelligence service.

Officials said they uncovered evidence that Williams had a record of engaging in autoerotic practices, and that he died when a sex game went wrong.

"The emerging background is something almost certainly autoerotic," said a senior official who has been briefed on the Scotland Yard investigation.

Numerous conspiracy theories regarding the reason for Williams's death have circulated since his body was discovered on August 23.