Sunday, January 02, 2011


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.