Family of murdered banker complain about ‘police lies’ during probe into shooting

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The family of murdered banker Alistair Wilson have lodged a complaint with police over the investigation – accusing officers of lying about the inquiry’s progress.

Mr Wilson, 30, was shot dead on his ­doorstep in the Highland town of Nairn in 2004, a crime which shocked and ­baffled Scotland.

Detectives last year made renewed appeals for information and this paper revealed that a potential suspect had been identified. 

A possible motive, a row over decking being built near Mr ­Wilson’s house, has also been established.

However, sources say his ­family are ­distressed and frustrated at a lack of progress. They also believe that officers misled them by suggesting that an arrest could be imminent, but then failed to detain the ­suspect for questioning.

Alistair Wilson, pictured with family in 2002, was shot on doorstep in 2004

Alistair Wilson, pictured with family in 2002, was shot on doorstep in 2004

It’s understood that the family are also ­dissatisfied with the way that their ­complaint, made in the summer, was dealt with by the police’s professional standards department.

The matter was passed to the Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC), which investigates police conduct in ­Scotland. A ­complaint has also been made to the Crown Office over the handling of the case.

A source close to the family said: ‘There is great frustration that, many months after a possible ­suspect was identified, police have yet to even take this person in for questioning. 

‘The family feel they have been lied to by police, that they have been given hope and indications that things will happen, then nothing happens.

‘There is only one outcome that the family hope and pray for, and that is decisive action is taken and the suspect detained and interviewed, in order that they can be eliminated from the inquiry or ­otherwise.’

Police forensic officers at the scene of the murder of the Nairn banker

Police forensic officers at the scene of the murder of the Nairn banker

Mr Wilson, a business manager at the Bank of Scotland, was shot at around 7pm on November 28, 2004, after a man called at the family’s home in Crescent Road, Nairn.

Mr Wilson’s wife, Veronica, answered the door to a man who asked for Alistair by name. 

Mr ­Wilson went downstairs to speak to the man and was handed a blue envelope with the word ‘Paul’ on it. He went back inside his house briefly, before returning to the door, where he was shot dead. The gun used to kill him, a Haenel Suhl pocket pistol from the 1930s, was found in a drain ten days later.

The inquiry was initially conducted by Northern Constabulary before being taken over by Police Scotland’s Major Investigation Team ten years ago.

For years officers were unable to identify suspects or even establish a clear motive. 

The 30-year-old was shot by a gunman with a 1930s pistol

The 30-year-old was shot by a gunman with a 1930s pistol

However, a flurry of police activity last year led to renewed hopes that the killer could be brought to justice. Detectives revised a description of the gunman as being between 20 and 40. They added that he was around 5ft 7in and wearing a baseball cap.

It also emerged police were investigating, as a possible motive, a planning row involving decking at the Havelock Hotel across the road from Mr Wilson’s house.

The ­decking was built in summer 2004 and was subject to a retrospective planning application. 

Mr Wilson had raised concerns with Highland Council over noise, ­broken glass and invasion of his family’s privacy and had sent it a letter five days before he was killed.

A Police Scotland spokesman said: ‘We have received a complaint which has been responded to. 

‘The investigation [into Mr Wilson’s death] remains ongoing.’

The Crown Office said: ‘We and Police Scotland have met with the family to discuss the ­matters raised by them.’ 

A spokesman for the PIRC said: ‘An application for a complaint handling review is ­currently undergoing assessment.’

Post source: The List

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