Did spy-in-bag killer slip back into flat through skylight to cover his tracks? New theory emerges over MI6 codebreaker death
* Theory rival spy 'trained in the dark arts of the secret services' murdered British agent
* Mystery of second mobile phone containing video of victim dancing naked in nothing but cowboy boots
By Daniel Miller | May 6, 2012
Detectives investigating the mysterious death of the body-in-the-bag spy believe a killer could have slipped back into his flat through a skylight to cover his tracks, it has been claimed.
MI6 codebreaker Gareth Williams was found dead in his London flat in 2010. A coroner ruled that he was 'probably killed illegally and his family remain convinced he was the victim of a rival agent.
Many close to the case believe he was assassinated by a spy working for foreign powers because of his work for MI6 and the US National Security Agency.
Speculation over the exact nature of his work has been growing since Foreign Secretary William Hague signed a public interest in order to stop details being released on security grounds.
It has been claimed that MI6 and the government eavesdropping centre GCHQ, to which Williams was attached, have been working on a computer virus designed to disrupt Iran's nuclear programme.
Questions are also being asked as to how MI6 came into possession of a second iPhone belonging to Mr Williams when Police found only one at his flat.
The agency handed over the mobile containing a video of Mr Williams dancing naked except for a pair of cowboy boots after his death was discovered.
However MI6 workers are forbidden from taking their personal phones into work and experts believe it is unlikely Williams would have risked bringing in a phone containing such a video.
Curiously the iPhone discovered by police searching the flat had been completely wiped of all memory.
Investigators are now believed to be working on a theory that the second phone was taken from the flat after Williams died but before police conducted a thorough search of the property.
MI6 regulations mean efforts are made to contact any employees who do not arrive at work by 10pm, yet Mr Williams' disappearance was not reported for eight days.
Another irregularity was the fact that heating in the flat had been turned up full blast - possibly because it would have accelerated the rate at which the body decomposed - helping to destroy any evidence.
The Sunday Mirror newspaper reports an intelligence source as saying: 'It's never been mentioned that there is a skylight but it was pretty clear to a lot of people in the case that there was no better way for the killer to get back into the flat.
'They could have come back to clean up the crime scene and got in through the skylight while police were outside.
'Of course, if MI6 were involved in his death that is one explanation for how they managed to get his phone.'
Anthony O'Toole, a barrister representing the family, has suggested that Gareth could have been killed by someone who specialises in 'the dark arts of the secret services.'
Coroner Dr Fiona Wilcox said the theory that Mr Williams was killed by a spy was 'legitimate line of inquiry'.
She has questioned the motives of those who leaked details about Mr Williams's private life, including his visits to bondage websites. His family say the visits could have been work-related.
Police wasted time on false leads generated by the leaks. Reports that Mr Williams went to gay bars in the Vauxhall area of London, and visited websites on sadomasochism and claustrophilia – the sexual pleasure of confined spaces – proved to be false.
Dr Wilcox said Mr Williams was not a transvestite and that his collection of £20,000 of unworn women's clothes were probably gifts for friends.
She said the cause of death was unnatural and likely to have been criminally mediated' and dismissed claims that Mr Williams had entered the sports bag seeking sexual gratification.
The coroner said: 'I wonder what the motive was for the release of this material to the media. I wonder whether this was an attempt by a third party to intimate a sexual motive.'