July 18, 2003

Body 'matches' Iraq expert

The crackdown intensifies...Is the Hatfield Factor in
play? Has Dr. David Kelly been Wellstoned? Or is this just
another "personal tragedy" like the Enron executive who
was going to sing to investigators and *chose* instead
to "commit suicide" (or so the official report from
the Sugarland, Texas police claimed)...Remember, 2+2=4


Body 'matches' Iraq expert

Police searching for the weapons expert suggested as
the possible source for a BBC story on Iraq say the
body they have found matches Dr David Kelly's
appearance. The government says an independent
judicial inquiry will be held into the circumstances
of his death if the body is confirmed to be that of Dr

The body was found at 0920 BST by a member of the
police team searching for Dr Kelly in a wooded area at
Harrowdown Hill, near Faringdon, Oxfordshire.

Government adviser Dr Kelly, 59, has denied being the
source of a BBC story on claims that a dossier on Iraq
was "sexed up".

He left his home in Southmoor, Abingdon, Oxfordshire,
at about 1500 BST on Thursday and his family reported
him missing at 2345 BST the same day.

The body was found lying on the ground, around five
miles from Dr Kelly's home, a police spokeswoman said.

Acting superintendent Dave Purnell said formal
identification would take place on Saturday and the
case was being treated as an "unexplained death".

"We will be awaiting the results of the post mortem
and also waiting while the forensic examination
continues at the scene at Harrowdown Hill," he added.


The government announcement of an inquiry if the body
is Dr Kelly's came from the prime minister's plane as
he flew for a visit to Tokyo.

Mr Blair's spokesman said: "The prime minister is
obviously very distressed for the family.

"If it is Dr Kelly's body, the Ministry of Defence
will hold an independent judicial inquiry into the
circumstances leading up to his death."

Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith said Mr Blair should
consider cutting short his trip to the Far East.

1500 BST: Told wife going for a walk near their home
2345 BST: Police informed he is missing

Robert Jackson, the Conservative MP in whose
constituency Dr Kelly lived, said the "responsibility
of the BBC should not go unmentioned" in the case.

"The pressure was significantly increased by the fact
the BBC refused to make it clear he was not the
source," he said.

A BBC spokesman said: "We are shocked and saddened to
hear what has happened and we extend our deepest
sympathies to Dr Kelly's family and friends.

"Whilst Dr Kelly's family await the formal
identification, it would not be appropriate for us to
make any further statement."

Earlier this week, Dr Kelly denied being the BBC's
main source for the story claiming Downing Street had
"sexed up" the dossier about Iraqi weapons of mass

MPs on the Commons foreign affairs committee, which
questioned Dr Kelly earlier this week, reacted with
shock and disbelief at news of his disappearance.

Huge media attention has been on Dr Kelly since the
Ministry of Defence said he had come forward to admit
meeting Andrew Gilligan, the BBC correspondent behind
the controversial Iraq story.

Mr Gilligan said a source had told him that the
dossier on Iraq had been "transformed" by Downing

The BBC correspondent has refused to name his source,
but the MoD said Dr Kelly had come forward to say it
may have been him.


Government ministers have said they believe he was the
source for Mr Gilligan's story.

Supt Purnell said a police family liaison officer is
with Dr Kelly's family. The official and wife Janice
have three daughters, Sian, 32, and twins Rachel and
Ellen, 30.

Ann Lewis, a neighbour of Dr Kelly, told BBC News
Online she was "devastated" for his family, especially
his children.

He is not used to the media glare, he is not used to
the intense spotlight he has been put under
Richard Ottaway
Tory MP

She said: "He was a quiet man. He was a man who showed
great care and concern for others."
Craig Foster, 36, landlord of the Blue Boar public
house in nearby Longworth, said Dr Kelly was "a very
well liked gentleman".

Police say Dr Kelly is an avid walker and has good
local knowledge of the many footpaths surrounding his

A Ministry of Defence spokeswoman said: "We are aware
that Dr David Kelly has gone missing and we are
obviously concerned."

The ministry said Dr Kelly had at no point been
threatened with suspension or dismissal for speaking
to Mr Gilligan.

It was made clear to him that he had broken civil
service rules by having unauthorised contact with a
journalist, but "that was the end of it", said a

Downing Street says "normal personnel procedures" were
followed after Dr Kelly volunteered that he might have
been the source of Mr Gilligan's report.
It was made clear to Dr Kelly that his name was likely
to become public knowledge because he was one of only
a small number of people it could have been about, a
spokesman said.

After questioning Dr Kelly earlier this week, the
Commons foreign affairs select committee said it was
"most unlikely" he was the main source for the BBC

And they said Dr Kelly, who has worked as a weapons
inspector in Iraq, had been "poorly treated" by the
government - a charge strongly rejected by the MoD.

There must be more to this than we had thought. I do
not know what that means, I just think there is
John Maples
Foreign affairs committee

Committee chairman Donald Anderson told the BBC his
"heart went out" to Dr Kelly's family as the search
for the official went on.
Another member of the committee, Tory John Maples said
he was "speechless" after hearing of the discovery of
a body.

"If it is (Dr Kelly), it is just awful. What can you
say? Nothing," he said.

"There must be more to this than we had thought. I do
not know what that means, I just think there is."

Tory MP Richard Ottaway, another committee member,
said: "He is not used to the media glare, he is not
used to the intense spotlight he has been put under."


Body 'matches' Iraq expert

The BBC has rejected Mr Anderson's claim that Mr
Gilligan was an "unreliable witness" who had changed
his story about the Iraq dossier claims when he met
the committee in private on Thursday.

Story from BBC NEWS:

Published: 2003/07/18 14:54:03 GMT


Posted by richard at July 18, 2003 09:26 AM