Code Breaker’s Body in Bag: ‘Third Party Involved’

News Brief – April 24, 2012

It took eight days for colleagues at MI6 to acknowledge that something was wrong with Gareth Williams, the code breaker whose body was found padlocked in a bag in his MI6 flat.
However, it was not his colleagues but William’s sister who first raised the alarm after she had not spoken to him for ten days. Thereafter police entered the flat in Alderney Street and found his decomposing body locked in a North Face holdall.
Adding to the mystery, specks of an unknown DNA were found on the holdall in the flat’s bathroom.
According to Detective Chief Inspector Jackie Sebire: “My thought or my opinion since I went into the scene is that a third party had been involved in the death or by putting the body in the bag. So my primary focus was looking at the bathroom.”
 Although DCI Sebire said she would have expected to find fingerprints left by Mr Williams on the bathroom tiles, this was not the case.
“Certainly there were no prints of anybody’s in the lower-tiled wall,” she said. “He was in the foetal position. His legs were folded up towards his chest, his arms were bent slightly inwards.”
The inquest was also shown CCTV footage of Williams in the days before he died when he was filmed shopping in some exclusive West End stores, including Harrods.
Gareth William sister, Ceri Subbe, told the inquest her brother was excited when he began a three-year secondment to MI6 from GCHQ, the Government listening station based in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire.
However, he became disillusioned with the atmosphere at MI6’s Vauxhall Cross headquarters in London.
‘He disliked office culture, post-work drinks, flash car competitions and the rat race. He even spoke of friction in the office,’ Mrs Subbe told the inquest.
‘The job was not quite what he expected’ she added. ‘He encountered more red tape than he was comfortable with.’
The inquest also heard about various objects found – or placed – near Gareth Williams body.
A woman’s orange wig, lipstick and a newspaper cutting entitled ‘Top Five Regrets of the Dying’ were among the items found near the body of the code-breaker.
Gareth William’s body was discovered nearly two years ago, but despite exhaustive tests the cause of his death still remains a mystery.
A walk-through video of his ‘incredibly tidy’ flat was played to Westminster Coroner’s Court. The short film focused on a long, orange wig with blonde tips hanging on the back of a chair, his work pass, mobile, sim cards and a penknife on the table, and a newspaper cutting on the coffee table.
The Observer newspaper article was headlined, ‘Nurses’ list of what we regret when we are on our death bed’. Based on a book by Australian nurse Bronnie Ware it recorded a wish list of the most common regrets expressed by those patients who were dying.
Among those regrets were: I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not what others expected. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends. I wish that I had let myself be happier.
We reserve judgement on what these objects may or may not signify. We would add however, that if the intention was to create the impression that Williams had committed suicide then these objects could have easily been placed in the flat along with his body.
So these objects may signify nothing beyond the impression that those who left Williams body wanted them to leave.
Significantly however, one key testimony at the inquest was not widely reported by the corporate media, although perhaps it should have been.
Sian Jones, a childhood friend of Gareth Williams, told the inquest that she did not believe he was a transvestite, despite the extensive amount of women’s clothing in his flat.
She said: “I feel like he would have been able to confide in me… and I would not have judged him.”
However she added: “He did say he was not happy in London. He said that he found it quite lonely in London and within work it was very cliquey.”
The inquest continues.

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