This Is Gloucestershire : Claims about GCHQ spy 'are just a decoy'

Monday, January 24, 2011

Claims about GCHQ spy 'are just a decoy'

January 24, 2011

A FORMER tutor of murdered GCHQ spy Dr Gareth Williams has claimed allegations about his private life are a 'decoy', according to reports.

The 31-year-old's body was found in a padlocked bag in his London flat last year.

He had been on secondment with MI6 in London following 10 years working at GCHQ in Cheltenham, during which time he rented a room in Prestbury.

Media reports have linked Dr Williams with an interest in women's clothing after designer dresses were found in his wardrobe.

It has also been suggested the expert codebreaker was homosexual.

However, Cheryl Eastap, who taught Dr Williams at Central St Martin's College in London, told the Mail on Sunday the claims and leaked suggestions were 'hurtful'.

She said: "It was hurtful to his family and it was a decoy.

"I don't think he was gay or a crossdresser. Maybe he collected dresses."

Ms Eastap dismissed newspaper reports last week that Dr Williams might have locked himself in the North Face holdall as some kind of 'homework' for her course, which was exploring confined spaces.

A Scotland Yard spokesman declined to say if any leaked information had come from police, MI5 or MI6.

Wales Online : Allegations about dead spy’s private life ‘a decoy’

Monday, January 24, 2011

Allegations about dead spy’s private life ‘a decoy’

by Carys Jones, Western Mail | January 24, 2011

A FORMER tutor of MI6 spy Gareth Williams yesterday claimed allegations about his sexuality and his private life were leaked as a decoy.

The 31-year-old from Anglesey was found dead in a padlocked sports bag in his central London flat last August.

Cheryl Eastap, who taught the GCHQ code-breaker on a part-time clothing design course in London, said suggestions from anonymous police and security sources that he was gay and a cross-dresser may have been made to make his death appear to be an accident rather than something more sinister.

Around £15,000 worth of designer women’s clothing was also found at his home, but Ms Eastap told a Sunday newspaper he may well have collected the outfits as many other fashions students do.

She said: “The police should not have leaked all these things about him.

“It was hurtful to his family and it was a decoy.”

Although the tutor said it was quite normal for fashion students to collect such items, she said Williams had not needed them for her course.

Despite a high-profile investigation into Mr Williams’s death, no one has yet been arrested or questioned as a suspect.

An inquest is due to take place next month.

Daily Mail : Body-in-bag spy's teacher says lurid police claims about his private life were a 'decoy'

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Body-in-bag spy's teacher says lurid police claims about his private life were a 'decoy'

By Abul Taher | January 23, 2011

A former tutor of the MI6 spy found dead in a padlocked sports bag has claimed that lurid allegations about his private life were a ‘decoy’.

Cheryl Eastap said suggestions from anonymous police and security sources that Gareth Williams was gay and a cross-dresser – denied by his family and friends – were ‘hurtful’.

And she hinted that the leaks may have been made to make it appear that his death was an accident rather than something more sinister.

Ms Eastap taught the 31-year-old GCHQ code-breaker at Central St Martin’s College in London, where he completed a part-time course in clothing design weeks before his body was found at his flat.

‘The police should not have leaked all these things about him. It was hurtful to his family and it was a decoy. I don’t think he was gay or a cross-dresser. Maybe he collected dresses – fashion students do,’ she said, referring to the fact that £15,000 of designer costumes were found in Williams’s Central London flat.

Ms Eastap said Williams did not need the outfits for her course. ‘Students have to buy their own materials, but the dresses they found in his flat had nothing to do with my course. He did not need them.’

Although Williams’s body was found five months ago, no one has been arrested over his death or questioned as a suspect, despite a high-profile investigation by Scotland Yard, with the assistance of MI5 and MI6.

In the days after Williams’s body was discovered, lurid reports appeared quoting unnamed sources which alleged he was a secret homosexual who visited the capital’s gay bars.

The sources said bondage equipment was found in his Pimlico flat as well as telephone numbers for gay escorts. The claims were later officially denied by the Metropolitan Police.

But last month police revealed that they had found women’s clothing and wigs at his flat. They added that Williams visited bondage websites and had a ticket for a drag comedy night.

Last month The Mail on Sunday interviewed Williams’s childhood sweetheart Sian Lloyd-Jones, 33, who said Williams usually bought expensive dresses for her and his younger sister, Ceri.

Miss Lloyd-Jones said the dresses could not have been for Williams as they were too small for him, and that he would have told her or his sister if he was gay.

Ms Eastap also dismissed news¬paper reports last week that Williams might have locked himself in the North Face holdall as some kind of ‘homework’ for her course, which was exploring confined spaces.

A Scotland Yard spokesman declined to comment on whether the leaks came from police, MI5 or MI6. He added: ‘The investigation is ongoing.’

MSN [UK] : Did spy Gareth Williams die in bizarre art accident?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Did spy Gareth Williams die in bizarre art accident?

Eliot Sefton, thefirstpost.co.uk, January 16, 2011

In a theory which seems so totally bizarre it might just be true, police now believe MI6 officer Gareth Williams zipped himself into a holdall in the bath in his flat as research for an art project - but suffocated before he could get out again.

A GCHQ codebreaker on secondment to MI6, where his work made him privy to highly classified anti-terrorism material, Williams was found dead on August 23 last year in a government safe house where he had been living.

At least a week after he had last been seen alive, his body was discovered in a North Face holdall in the bath at his top-floor apartment in Pimlico, a short walk from MI6 headquarters.

Problematically for investigators, no cause of death could be determined. Theories about Williams's death have since ranged from polonium poisoning by foreign agents to bizarre sex games gone wrong.

Now, the Sunday Mirror says, police have come up with the strangest theory yet.

Investigation of Williams's laptop revealed he had paid £695 to join a 10-week part-time course at Central St Martin's College in London titled Fashion Design for Beginners.

St Martin's is an illustrious place to study fashion, with alumi among the world's top designers, including Alexander McQueen, John Galliano and Stella McCartney - so it is evident that the thorough codebreaker had done his research and was serious about the course.

The fashion course also explains the presence of £15,000-worth of designer dresses, including some by Stella McCartney, and pairs of shoes in Williams's flat. It had earlier been claimed he was a cross-dresser - though the clothes were still wrapped.

Police also discovered Williams had visited bondage websites on his laptop. The new theory suggests there may have been no sexual motive for this.

A police source told the newspaper: "He had also visited websites linked to bondage although he may have simply been looking up ways to lock himself up and then unlock himself."

Why? Because, police believe, he had been given a project by his St Martin's tutor titled 'Living Spaces'.

They now think the holdall may have been an attempt by Williams to research a project on exactly how little living space it is possible to exist in - research that went horribly wrong when the fit 31-year-old found himself trapped and suffocated in the August heat.

The theory is so bizarre it's tempting to believe it: and it certainly should provide comfort for Williams's family, who have made public their dismay at the suggestion he was leading secret double life as a cross-dressing, gay, bondage enthusiast.

Williams's close friend Sian Lloyd-Jones said last month: "It would have been fine [by us] if he was [gay] but he had too much ­interest in women.

"He was really open with his friends and family about his ­personal life and I truly believe if he had any interest in homosexuality he would have spoken to his sister and to me as well."

But at least one person close to story seems to find the new theory less than convincing: Williams's fashion tutor, Cheryl Eastap. She told the newspaper: "The police did come to see me.

"The idea that his death and his work on the course was linked is a crazy idea that the police dreamed up. They said it might relate to it but I can’t see how it relates at all."

And security analysts reacted with extreme scepticism to the suggestion that Williams could have zipped himself into the holdall when it was first mooted in September. At the time it was thought he had zipped himself in for sexual reasons.

But if the theory is bunk, where did it come from? Could it be a clumsy attempt to atone to Williams's family and friends for the earlier slurs - while the truth of his death remains an espionage-shrouded mystery?

Mirror : MI6 spy death could be bizarre art course accident

Sunday, January 16, 2011

MI6 spy death could be bizarre art course accident

By Susie Boniface, Sunday Mirror | January 16, 2011

MI6 spy Gareth Williams – whose body was found naked in a padlocked bag – may have died while taking part in a bizarre experiment for an art project.

Police now believe the codebreaker could have accidentally killed himself while doing research for a part-time art and fashion course after being set an assignment entitled Living Spaces.

In the weeks before his death it is feared he was trying to push the ­boundaries by existing in a confined space.

The development would come as a comfort to Gareth’s family, who have endured months of speculation that he was secretly gay, indulged in bizarre sex games and was a cross-dresser.

The superfit maths genius, 31, had joined a weekend class at prestigious Central St Martin’s College in London to learn about clothes design.

Gareth’s body lay undiscovered for more than a week in a padlocked North Face holdall in the bath of an MI6 safe house in Pimlico, central London, where he was living.

It has now emerged that, in marked contrast to his work in the staid world of the secret services, he paid £695 to enrol on a part-time course run by ­lecturer and designer Cheryl Eastap called Fashion Design for Beginners.

Every Saturday he cycled or took the Tube three stops to join 17 other students from 10am to 4pm on the intensive 10-week course.

The college’s list of illustrious ­graduates reads like a Who’s Who of British art and fashion including punk maverick Malcolm McLaren, designers ­Alexander McQueen, John Galliano and Stella McCartney, whose clothes Gareth collected.

Gareth also enrolled on an arts evening class as part of a secret life away from ­being a spy.

The macabre discovery of his body prompted a massive police inquiry in which murder or ­manslaughter were two prominent theories.

But officers are now working on the basis that the death was a bizarre ­accident NOT related to a sex game – and was not foul play.

A source close to the investigation said: “Gareth was exceptionally ­talented at what he did and took it very ­seriously. Alongside cycling, fashion and art was a big obsession of his.

“It was typical of Gareth to throw everything he had into a project so certainly one avenue we are now ­looking at is whether he was experimenting with his art work. It would make a lot of sense.

“We’re still looking at whether anyone else was there at the time of his death and continue to appeal for more ­information, but it is looking more like a tragic, freak accident than a ­murder.”

The spy’s death posed awkward ­problems for police because his body had no sign of injury and post-mortems found no cause of death.

His blood was checked for poisons and he was even checked for exposure to radioactive elements such as ­Polonium-210, which was used to ­assassinate former Russian spy ­Alexander Litvinenko.

Gareth, from Holyhead, Anglesey, had been living at the £1million flat while on secondment to MI6.

He was working on encrypted ­computer systems used to analyse ­international intelligence on suspects ranging from al-Qaeda to cyber-terrorists attacking the banking system. As they investigated his death, ­detectives searched his belongings and found £15,000 of untouched women’s ­designer clothes and shoes, still in their wrapping, from high-end labels including Diane von F├╝rstenberg, Christian Louboutin and Stella McCartney.

His laptop computer had been used to access websites linked to bondage ­practices and there were unfounded reports that £18,000 had gone missing.

A man and woman of “Mediterranean appearance” were also hunted after being seen entering the building but have never been found, causing some to suggest they were either agents of a foreign power sent to kill Gareth or involved in sex games with him.

It was discovered that it was possible for someone of Gareth’s size and trim build to climb into the bag and padlock the zip shut from inside.

The source said the laptop, on which Gareth stored his coursework, led them to quiz his college tutor Cheryl Eastap about the module she was teaching and whether her pupil might have gone beyond the boundaries of what was expected. It hasn’t been suggested Ms Eastap instructed her students to take part in any dangerous experiments.

The police source added: “It’s most likely he was using the dresses as part of his studies, rather than being a cross-dresser. He had also visited websites linked to bondage although he may have simply been looking up ways to lock himself up and then unlock himself.”

One of the fellow pupils on Gareth’s course said the spy was not known to be gay and had a series of girlfriends.The student added: “Gareth was ­passionate about clothes and everyone assumed this is what he wanted to do as a career.

“No-one knew he was a spy or ­working for MI6 but he was very polite and quiet. He was extremely clever, good at what he was doing and had clearly ­researched his subject.

“The police came to the college and took all the work he had produced for the course and any projects he was involved in.”

The brochure for the course says: “We will cover the basics of fashion design including inspiration, ­research, developing your ideas, figure illustration and portfolio preparation.”

Ms Eastap confirmed she had been questioned by police over the ­possible links between his death and a project called Living Spaces.

However, she insisted the death must have been caused by ­something, or someone, else.

She said: “The police did come to see me. The idea that his death and his work on the course was linked is a crazy idea that the police dreamed up. They said it might relate to it but I can’t see how it relates at all.”

Last month Sian Lloyd-Jones, Gareth’s childhood sweetheart and best friend, said he often bought her designer clothes and that all those found in his flat were a size 6 or 8. They would not have fitted him but may have been intended for her or his ­sister.

She added: “He was really open with his friends and family about his ­personal life and I truly believe if he had any interest in homosexuality he would have spoken to his sister and to me as well.

“I’m not in denial and nor are ­Gareth’s mum, dad or sister. It would have been fine if he was but he had too much ­interest in women.”

s.boniface@sundaymirror.co.uk

The First Post : Did spy Gareth Williams die in bizarre art accident?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Did spy Gareth Williams die in bizarre art accident?
[or here]

Police now believe MI6 man zipped himself in holdall as art project

By Eliot Sefton | January 16, 2011

In a theory which seems so totally bizarre it might just be true, police now believe MI6 officer Gareth Williams zipped himself into a holdall in the bath in his flat as research for an art project - but suffocated before he could get out again.

A GCHQ codebreaker on secondment to MI6, where his work made him privy to highly classified anti-terrorism material, Williams was found dead on August 23 last year in a government safe house where he had been living.

At least a week after he had last been seen alive, his body was discovered in a North Face holdall in the bath at his top-floor apartment in Pimlico, a short walk from MI6 headquarters.

Problematically for investigators, no cause of death could be determined. Theories about Williams's death have since ranged from polonium poisoning by foreign agents to bizarre sex games gone wrong.

Now, the Sunday Mirror says, police have come up with the strangest theory yet.

Investigation of Williams's laptop revealed he had paid £695 to join a 10-week part-time course at Central St Martin's College in London titled Fashion Design for Beginners.

St Martin's is an illustrious place to study fashion, with alumi among the world's top designers, including Alexander McQueen, John Galliano and Stella McCartney - so it is evident that the thorough codebreaker had done his research and was serious about the course.

The fashion course also explains the presence of £15,000-worth of designer dresses, including some by Stella McCartney, and pairs of shoes in Williams's flat. It had earlier been claimed he was a cross-dresser - though the clothes were still wrapped.

Police also discovered Williams had visited bondage websites on his laptop. The new theory suggests there may have been no sexual motive for this.

A police source told the newspaper: "He had also visited websites linked to bondage although he may have simply been looking up ways to lock himself up and then unlock himself."

Why? Because, police believe, he had been given a project by his St Martin's tutor titled 'Living Spaces'.

They now think the holdall may have been an attempt by Williams to research a project on exactly how little living space it is possible to exist in - research that went horribly wrong when the fit 31-year-old found himself trapped and suffocated in the August heat.

The theory is so bizarre it's tempting to believe it: and it certainly should provide comfort for Williams's family, who have made public their dismay at the suggestion he was leading secret double life as a cross-dressing, gay, bondage enthusiast.

Williams's close friend Sian Lloyd-Jones said last month: "It would have been fine [by us] if he was [gay] but he had too much ­interest in women.

"He was really open with his friends and family about his ­personal life and I truly believe if he had any interest in homosexuality he would have spoken to his sister and to me as well."

But at least one person close to story seems to find the new theory less than convincing: Williams's fashion tutor, Cheryl Eastap. She told the newspaper: "The police did come to see me.

"The idea that his death and his work on the course was linked is a crazy idea that the police dreamed up. They said it might relate to it but I can’t see how it relates at all."

And security analysts reacted with extreme scepticism to the suggestion that Williams could have zipped himself into the holdall when it was first mooted in September. At the time it was thought he had zipped himself in for sexual reasons.

But if the theory is bunk, where did it come from? Could it be a clumsy attempt to atone to Williams's family and friends for the earlier slurs - while the truth of his death remains an espionage-shrouded mystery?

Daily Mail : 'Spy in the bag' inquest delayed as police chase new leads

Sunday, January 16, 2011

'Spy in the bag' inquest delayed as police chase new leads

By Mail On Sunday Reporter | January 16, 2011

The mystery over the MI6 spy found locked in a sports bag has taken a new twist after his inquest was delayed.

The hearing into the death of Gareth Williams, 31, was due to take place at Westminster Coroner’s Court on February 15, but it has now been adjourned and no new date has been set.

The postponement to allow further investigations by police will raise fresh questions about the baffling case.

Detectives are following new leads about a couple who called at his flat before he died. They have received several possible names for the man and woman who visited the codebreaker’s MI6-owned flat in Pimlico, London, in June or July last year.

Mr Williams’s body was found at the apartment inside a padlocked North Face holdall on August 23. Two post-mortems failed to establish how he died, while toxicology tests found no evidence of drugs, alcohol or poisons in his system.

At a Press conference last month, detectives issued e-fit pictures of the man and woman, both believed to be in their 20s and of Mediterranean appearance.

They were let into the block of four flats by a tenant on the ground floor. The couple told her they had keys to Mr Williams’s flat, number four, but said they were there to visit someone called Pier Paolo.

Wired : Police Publish Images of Two Sought in Codebreaker’s Death

Thursday, January 06, 2011

Police Publish Images of Two Sought in Codebreaker’s Death

By Kim Zetter | January 6, 2011

In an effort to identify two people who may be connected to the mysterious death of a top British codebreaker, authorities have published images of a man and woman who entered his apartment building weeks before his death.

Gareth Williams, 31, was found dead and naked in a North Face duffel bag in the bathtub of his flat last August. The sports bag was padlocked on the outside.

The two, said to be in their 20s and of Mediterranean appearance, were let in to Williams’ building by another tenant in late June or July. They told the tenant they had keys to Williams’ flat but indicated they knew him as Pier Paolo.

Williams, described by those who knew him as a “math genius,” worked for the U.K.’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) helping to break coded Taliban communications, among other things. He was just completing a year-long stint with MI6, Britain’s secret intelligence service, when he died. The flat where he lived was part of a network of flats registered to an offshore front company and rented out to GCHQ workers.

Williams had been dead for at least a week when his body was found. His mobile phone and a number of SIM cards were laid out on a table near the body, according to news reports. There were no signs of forced entry to the apartment and no signs of a struggle. The keys to the padlock on the duffel bag were found inside the bag beneath Williams’ body.

The codebreaker reportedly had made repeated visits to the United States to meet with the National Security Agency and worked closely with British and U.S. spy agencies to intercept and examine communications that passed between an al Qaeda official in Pakistan and three men who were convicted last year of plotting to bomb transcontinental flights.

Investigators haven’t ruled out the possibility that Williams was killed over something related to his work but believe his death may have been related to his personal life. Investigators believe Pier Paolo was an alias Williams may have used that was borrowed from Pier Paolo Pasolini, a controversial Italian filmmaker who made films that included sexual violence. According to recent reports, Williams had accessed five bondage websites prior to his death.

Williams flew up to four times a year to the United States to the NSA’s headquarters at Fort Meade, according to the British paper the Mirror. His uncle, Michael Hughes, told the paper that Williams would mysteriously disappear for three or four weeks.

“The trips were very hush-hush,” Hughes said. “They were so secret that I only recently found out about them — and we’re a very close family. It had become part of his job in the past few years. His last trip out there was a few weeks ago, but he was regularly back and forth.”

Williams was said to have worked with the NSA on e-mails intercepted between Abdullah Ahmed Ali and Assad Sarwar and Rashid Rauf, a British national in Pakistan who was allegedly director of European operations for al Qaeda. The e-mails, intercepted by the NSA in 2006, allegedly contained coded messages.

The NSA shared the e-mails with British prosecutors but wouldn’t allow them to use the evidence in an early trial of the suspects out of fear of tipping off Rauf that he was under surveillance. It was only after Rauf was reportedly killed in a U.S. drone attack that the NSA allowed prosecutors to use the e-mails to convict the other suspects.

It’s never been known whether the NSA intercepted the messages overseas or siphoned them as they passed through internet nodes on U.S. soil as part of the NSA’s controversial and unconstitutional warrantless wiretapping program.

An unidentified Western intelligence source told the Mirror that Williams’ job would have had him participating in “crucial high-level meetings with American intelligence officers. His job would have been crucial to the security of the U.K. and our interests abroad — and also to America and Europe. Although not particularly high up the GCHQ ladder, the importance of his role should not be underestimated. The man was a mathematical genius.”

His landlady, Jenny Elliott, told the Telegraph, “Occasionally, you could hear tapes whirring from his flat, which must have been audio cassettes he used for work, but he never told me what they were.”

This Is London : New leads for police in hunt for mystery pair who visited spy

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

New leads for police in hunt for mystery pair who visited spy

Justin Davenport, Crime Editor | January 4, 2011

Detectives investigating the bizarre death of spy Gareth Williams are following a number of new leads suggesting the identity of a couple who called at his flat before he died.

Police have been given several possible names for the man and a woman, who visited the MI6-owned flat in Alderney Street, Pimlico in late June or July last year.

The naked body of the 31-year-old codebreaker was found on 23 August padlocked inside a large North Face holdall. He is thought to have suffocated.

Murder squad detectives believe a second person padlocked the holdall but has failed to come forward.

They issued E-fit pictures of the man and woman, described as being in their twenties and of Mediterranean appearance, who were let in by a tenant on the ground floor of the building.

They told her they had keys to the flat where Mr Williams lived but said they were there to visit someone called Pier Paolo. They went upstairs to the top floor flat and did not re-appear.

One source close to the inquiry said: “There has been a good response to the appeal and a number of names [for the couple] are being explored.”

The inquiry is examining the possibility that Mr Williams, a GCHQ codebreaker who was on secondment to MI6 in Vauxhall, used an alias for possible secret liaisons.

One theory is that Mr Williams took the name Pier Paolo from the Italian poet and film director Pasolino, whose works include Salo, which was based on the novel 120 Days of Sodom by the Marquis de Sade.

Pasolino was murdered in 1975, run down in his own car near Rome.

Detectives believe Mr Williams's death is linked to his private life but have not ruled out a link to his work. He is known to have visited several bondage websites.

Anyone with information should ring police on 020 8358 0200 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555111.

Sun : Sex film alias of spy in bag

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Sex film alias of spy in bag

By MIKE SULLIVAN, Crime Editor | January 4, 2011

THE spy found dead in a bag at his flat is believed to have used the alias of a notorious movie maker for kinky sex liaisons.

An unknown man and woman who visited the home of MI6 codebreaker Gareth Williams weeks previously told a neighbour they were there to visit someone called Pier Paolo.

Police suspect it was a bogus identity assumed by 31-year-old Mr Williams using the first two names of Italian director Pier Paolo Pasolini, who made films featuring explicit sexual violence.

The pair also appeared to have a key to Mr Williams' flat in Pimlico, South West London - where Mr Williams was believed to have died inside the 32in-long sports bag after a kinky sex game went wrong.

A police source said: "The use of the name Pier Paolo suggests the couple were there for unorthodox sexual reasons. Did they leave him in the bag a few weeks later with tragic consequences?"

Police were keen to speak to the pair, of Mediterranean appearance. Mr Williams was found dead on August 23 last year. An inquest will be held on February 15.

Express: BAG SPY VISITED DRAG SHOW JUST BEFORE HE DIED

Sunday, January 02, 2011

BAG SPY VISITED DRAG SHOW JUST BEFORE HE DIED

By James Murray | January 2, 2011

POLICE piecing together the last hours of spy Gareth Williams’s life have revealed he visited a drag cabaret show just days before his bizarre death.

Scotland Yard murder detectives said the 31-year-old MI6 codebreaker visited the Bistrotheque in London’s Bethnal Green on August 13 last year, a few days after flying back from a holiday in the US.

He vanished two days later and his naked body was discovered in a holdall in his bath on August 23.

The club he visited has an upstairs restaurant and bar and a downstairs cabaret stage.

The Sunday Express has established that Cambridge-educated Mr Williams booked the ticket for the cabaret before going there and decided not to eat at the restaurant or hang around in the bar when he arrived in the evening.

Instead, he went straight to the downstairs cabaret room and sat to watch the one-hour show featuring Jonny Woo, pictured above left, often described as the queen of the ­capital’s drag scene.

Woo, a popular entertainer at the venue, performed a short skit from Les Miserables and dressed in several outrageous costumes during the show. As soon as it ended, Mr Williams got up and left.

His family and friends vehemently deny accusations he was living a secret life as a gay man in central London. The club’s co-owner, Pablo Flack, said Mr Williams was not known to staff and no one could recall seeing him before.

Despite the drag cabaret, he said the venue was popular with straight couples and none of the regular gay customers could recall speaking to him.

Mr Flack, a flamboyant figure in the fashion world, said: “I think the public may have got the wrong impression from the reports about this man.

“He did not spend long here and he is not someone people remember.

“We think he just came along to see the show. Jonny Woo does have a good reputation as an entertainer, especially in the fashion and artistic world.”

Mr Williams obviously enjoyed the performance because he bought tickets to see two other shows but there is no suggestion he knew Mr Woo.

Detectives have revealed that Mr ­Williams had £15,000-worth of women’s designer clothes, including dresses, shoes and wigs, at his flat in Alderney Street, ­Pimlico, London.

Shortly before Christmas they also revealed he was studying fashion for beginners at the Central St Martins ­College in Clerkenwell and had visited bondage websites.

One theory that police are ­considering now is that he had visited the Bistrotheque as part of his interest in fashion. Shortly after his body was found in his flat in a zipped-up and padlocked ­holdall, detectives went to Bistrotheque when they discovered he had bought the drag cabaret tickets. Mr Flack said: “They asked to see some CCTV on the relevant date and we burned off a disc for them but the footage was only showing the outside.

“It is pretty dark in the cabaret area so if there were pictures you wouldn’t be able to see much anyway.”

Detectives are trying to discover if Mr ­Williams went to the venue to meet a mysterious Mediterranean-looking man and woman who had called at his home in the ­summer but there is nothing to suggest at this stage that they were there.

Last week Sian Lloyd-Jones, 33, a ­childhood friend of Mr Williams, said he showed no inclinations of being gay and thought he would have given his designer clothes to her and his ­sister, Ceri, because he was so generous with gifts. However, questions remain about why Mr Williams would spend so much of his ­salary on women’s clothes.

Ms Lloyd-Jones, who was given £760 Stella McCartney PVC ­trousers from Mr Williams, claimed he was learning a new identity for an assignment with the intelligence service before his death but did not know what his ­undercover ­operation would be.