Session 13. Tuesday Morning, May 1, 2012

SESSION 13. Tuesday Morning, May 1, 2012
8:42@skynewsgathererBack with @Stone_SkyNews for final stage of inquest into death of Gareth Williams. Today DCI Jackie Sebire will be recalled
8:58@skynewsgathererCoroner has asked to recall Ros Hammond, forensic scientist from LGC. Plus call a DC Hall from Met and an anonymous witness called SIS D
9:05@stone_skynewsBack at what should be the penultimate day in the inquest of MI6 spy Gareth Williams. The coroner should deliver verdict tomorrow
9:07@stone_skynewsThere is now suggestion already that things may slip in Gareth Williams inquest. Coroner is asking for witnesses to be recalled
9:07@stone_skynewsThe forensic scientist who gave evidence yesterday, a police officer and a new anon MI6 witness could be called on to give evidence
9:11@skynewsgathererDCI Jackie Sebire back in the witness box, she is the SIO in Gareth Williams case
WITNESS: Jackie Sebire
9:12@skynewsgathererCoroner asks if detective had ever been provided with a list of Gareth's belongings from SIS or GCHQ. She says no
9:13@skynewsgathererDetective says the first she heard of a North Face holdall being found amongst work things was yesterday
9:14@skynewsgathererDCI says she only learnt this morning that 9 memory sticks were found with Gareth's work belongings
9:16@stone_skynewsThroughout this inquest there has been an awkward desire to balance public interest with national security
9:16@stone_skynewsCoroner grants anonymity to a further MI6 witness and recalls the Forensic Scientist, Ros Hammond later today
9:16@skynewsgathererFamily lawyer asking if DCI had been aware of memory sticks in 2010 if she would have looked at them
9:19@skynewsgathererDCI says that memory sticks would have been checked had she known about them. DCI was only told of emails
9:24@stone_skynewsInteresting developments - cop in charge of investigation says she was not aware of 9 memory sticks found in Gareth Williams work belongings
9:25@skynewsgathererGareth Williams inquest now in chambers. Update when we are allowed back into court
9:37@skynewsgathererNext up is DC Colin Hall, he had not been due to give evidence today
WITNESS: Colin Hall
9:38@skynewsgathererDetective went to MI6 offices on 26 August, 3 days after Gareth was discovered dead
9:40@skynewsgathererDC Hall was taken to the room that Gareth shared with 3 colleagues. He was taken to one of 3 cabinets
9:42@skynewsgathererDetective told certain items were for Gareth's work and he couldn't examine them. No inventory was taken
9:44@skynewsgathererDC Hall works a forensic officer with the Met's counter terrorism team SO15
9:45@skynewsgathererDC says there was no evidence that Gareth's cabinet had been sealed following his death. But it was locked
9:49@skynewsgathererDC Hall says it's not be routine to take an inventory of items. He only recorded a photocopied birth certificate of Gareth and a note pad
9:49@skynewsgathererItems were seized on DC's second visit to MI6
9:51@skynewsgathererDC says that if he had seen a mobile phone in Gareth's office he would have seized it. DC doesn't remember seeing one
9:55@skynewsgathererDC says he found a black North Face back under Gareth's desk. It contained 'personal items'. The bag was not seized
9:56@skynewsgathererDC says he was told by Supt that the bag should be locked and left in place. ' I am a DC I do what I am told'
9:57@skynewsgathererDC admits that the bag should have been seized. The bag was looked through but no inventory was taken
9:58@skynewsgathererDC says he was acting on orders from Supt Michael Broster
10:01@skynewsgathererGareth's work cabinet was sealed on August 26 during So15's 55 minute visit. DC says the search was cut short
10:02@skynewsgathererDC doesn't know why search was cut short but that he had to return the following day to complete it
10:04@skynewsgathererDC Hall also attended search of GCHQ, where Gareth had worked before secondment to SIS in London
10:06@skynewsgathererDC found 3 'entirely' empty draws with the keys found in the top one, inquest told. He says he would have made note if any docs found
10:08@skynewsgathererDC Hall confirms he has security clearance when asked by family lawyer. The DC went into Gareth's flat the day body found
10:10@skynewsgathererDC's job was to look for 'sensitive' items in the flat. He found some but none were seized, he tells inquest
10:14@skynewsgathererUnder questioning from family lawyer DC Hall admits cabinet was not 'sealed' but relocked with same combination lock by MI6
10:16@skynewsgathererDC changes evidence and says the bag was locked and put in cabinet not left in situ under table as he said earlier
10:18@skynewsgathererDC Hall says bag was unlocked by MI6, he can't remember how it was locked and unlocked
10:19@skynewsgathererDC says he can't remember exactly what was in the bag. Family lawyer says 'it's as helpful as a London pea-souper'
10:20@skynewsgathererDC was told by superior officer not to take Gareth's passport. He says he can't remember where it was
10:21@skynewsgathererDC asked if Kray twins were involved rather than SIS if things would have been done differently
10:22@skynewsgathererDC says he was told by MI6 as to what was sensitive and what was not
10:22@skynewsgathererDC Hall: "I was under instructions and as I said I do what I am told."
10:33@stone_skynewsIt emerges that the only items seized by police from Gareth Williams 2 work places were laptop, post-it note pad & birth certificate copy
10:35@skynewsgathererDC saw memory sticks but was told they contained sensitive information
10:37@skynewsgathererMI6 barrister making the point that SO15 was brought in because of security clearance and could have requested to seize items
10:46@skynewsgathererDC Hall asked about a hotel bill and medical note found in cabinet. DC says he did not seize those items
10:48@skynewsgathererSIS barrister now asking DC Hall if he could be wrong that Gareth's pedestal at GCHQ was empty. Asking if 2 H&S certs were there
10:50@skynewsgathererDC Hall saying he is relying on his notes he made at the time. It makes no mention of health and safety certificates
10:57@skynewsgathererBag in question found at MI6 has now been brought into court. Coroner wants to check lock - police taking forensic advice
10:59@skynewsgathererDC Hall showing the court how big Gareth's work cabinet was - looks about six feet tall
11:03@skynewsgathererCoroner pushing whether DC Hall would have known if Supt Broster had discovered phone in cabinet
11:03@skynewsgathererDC hall eventually replies: "I would have thought I would have known"
11:04@skynewsgathererDC Hall now putting on gloves to look at the lock on North Face bag found in Gareth's office
11:05@skynewsgathererThe bag is unlocked and empty, there are no padlocks, or locks of any kind on it
11:07@skynewsgathererDC Hall says he can't be sure it was the bag in question
11:08@skynewsgathererPolice now checking in various carrier bags to see if they can find lock
11:09@skynewsgathererFamily lawyer remarking that whole point of exhibits officer is to record items which could be relevant
11:10@stone_skynewsCourt has now seen the bag said to have been found but not seized at Gareth Williams MI6 office. It is a small black North Face holdall
11:12@skynewsgathererDC Hall has now been released from court to go and look for a padlock after checks made with crime scene manager
11:13@skynewsgathererForensic scientist Ros Hammond from LGC now recalled for a couple of quick questions from coroner
WITNESS: Ros Hammond
11:13@stone_skynewsCrux of morning questioning is why police did not seize certain/all items from Gareth Williams workplace? Were they prevented from doing so?
11:15@stone_skynewsCoroner also examining who locked/unlocked/sealed/unsealed items at Gareth Williams MI6 office. Confusing lines of questioning
11:16@skynewsgathererMs Hammond asked about timing as to when DNA error discovered. Mistake uncovered on Feb 7 and confirmed on 8th
11:19@skynewsgathererInquest adjourned for lunch after an incredible morning of evidence
END OF SESSION 13. Tuesday Morning, May 1, 2012

Link to source of May 1 coverage