Detective denies spy's death was connected to his work

Gareth Williams
Gareth Williams was found dead in his flat in Pimlico. Photo: Metropolitan Police

A counter-terrorism detective has told the Gareth Williams inquest that the death of the MI6 spy was not connected to his intelligence work. Detective Superintendent Michael Broster told the inquest he had examined information about Mr Williams from MI6 and GCHQ and he did not think there was a link. Mr Williams worked for GCHQ but was on a secondment to MI6 when he died. His body was found locked in a bag in his flat in Pimlico in 2010.

"There's no link between his work and his death that I've been privy to."

– Detective Superintendent Michael Broster

Det Supt Broster, who is part of the Metropolitan Police's SO15 counter-terrorism unit, said he had met with officers from MI6 and GCHQ several times to discuss Mr Williams' intelligence role."There's no link between his work and his death that I've been privy to," he said.

"When I was asking SIS in relation to his work, in the back of my mind as an investigator I'm asking what potential links there could be with the finding of his body.

"I was doing a bit of my own investigation to see if I could find a link.

"I've asked for, and been supplied with, all the relevant information in relation to his death.

"I don't work for SIS or GCHQ so I can't say absolutely definitely, but a very senior manager at SIS assured me I've been privy to his work and I've been able to make an assessment based on that."

Mr Williams' landlady testified that several years before his death, he had tied himself to his bed and had to be rescued.

Jennifer Elliot said: "We were in bed and we heard Gareth shouting for help. It was about 1.30am and during winter.

"We went upstairs and found him lying in his bed with both hands tied with material attached at the headboard."

"He was very embarrassed. He said 'I just wanted to see if I could get myself free'."

She said he agreed not to try tying himself again.