ITV : Insight into spy's life

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Insight into spy's life

April 25, 2012

wig on chair inside Gareth Williams' flat A wig and £20,000 worth of designer women's clothes were found in Gareth Williams' flat Photo: Metropolitan police

Gareth Williams' family have always maintained they believe his mysterious death was somehow linked to his work for MI6 and today the inquest into the 30 year-olds death heard from his boss.

The MI6 worker, who gave evidence behind a 10ft blue screen to protect his identity, said he had wrongly assumed Mr Williams was stuck on a train when he missed a meeting seven days before his rotting remains were found. He spoke of his regret of failing to raise the alarm that Gareth was missing.

He went on to tell the coroner that Mr Williams wanted to leave MI6 because he was bogged down in bureaucracy and described Mr Williams as a "quiet intellectual" who rarely joined colleagues for drink.

The job Mr Williams never discussed remained under the spotlight, as a counter terrorism officer told the inquest that he had found no connection between the codebreaker's work and his death.

Questioned by the Williams' family lawyer Det Supt Michael Broster said he could not testify absolutey that Mr Williams' computers at his office hadn't been interefered with by M16 before they were seized by his team - but said he had no reason to suspect that they had.

The inquest also heard from Elizabeth Guthrie, a friend of Mr Williams, who gave an insight into his life and personality saying that despite living nearby she had never visited the flat where Mr Williams' body was found.

She insisted that she had only known him to let family into his immaculately kept home.

The inquest heard that following the discovery of the body, when police entered the property on the 23rd August 2010 they found a wig in the living room on the back of a chair. They also found clothing folded neatly on the bed but his duvet was discarded on the floor.

In another bedroom £20,000 worth of designer women's clothes were found but his close friend Ms Guthrie insisted that they certainly wouldn't have been for him.

She told the inquest he had never shown any interest in cross dressing, and that the two of them were planning to go to a fancy dress party together, wearing wigs and makeup.

After being asked by the family lawyer - she revealed Gareth had told her he sometime used another name. A line of questioning stopped by the Coroner.

There was more insight into Mr Williams' background with evidence from his former landlady who had owned the flat he lived in in Cheltenham for ten years while he worked at CCGQ.

In a statement Jennifer Elliot told the inquest that three years before his death, Gareth had called for help in the middle of the night and she and her husband had found him with his arms tied to his bed.

He told the couple he just wanted to see if he could "get himself free"

His landlady said the incident was never mentioned or repeated again - and that she was expecting him to go back to renting her flat just days after his body was discovered padlocked in a holdall in the bath in his flat.

The inquest continues.