Jeremy Thorpe Case 'Hitman' Lived Openly in Chiswick for Years

Police reopen investigation after discovering Andrew Newton was still alive


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The man who was accused of being a hitman hired to kill the former lover of Jeremy Thorpe is being sought by police. They had previously believed him to be dead but reopened the case after they discovered that he was alive and well and had been living openly in Chiswick.

Detectives in Gwent had not sought to interview Andrew Newton after new evidence relating to the alleged attempted murder of Norman Scott emerged in 2014. Although he had changed his name to Hann Redwin, his true identity as Andrew Newton was an open secret locally. Ironically, he was often seen walking his dog in local parks. He freely admitted to his involvement in the case often unprompted. Mr Redwin had lived on Abinger Road until around two years ago when he sold his house and is now believed to be residing in Dorking although he has been seen in the area more recently.

Andrew Newton/Hann Redwin
Andrew Newton/Hann Redwin

Mr Scott, was quoted by the BBC as saying, “I just don’t think anyone’s tried hard enough to look for him. I really don’t.

“I thought [Gwent Police] were doing something at last and soon found out that absolutely they weren’t, they were continuing the cover-up as far as I can see.”

Gwent Police announced this Saturday (2 June) that they had incorrectly assumed Andrew Newton was dead and had closed an ongoing reinvestigation of the case in 2017. The case had been reopened after claims that the evidence of a person hired to kill Mr Scott had been suppressed were published by the BBC. Dennis Meighan had said that he was the first hitman hired and that he had been recruited by associates of Jeremy Thorpe along with Mr Newton. He made the revelations in 2014 to Chiswick-based journalist, Tom Mangold.

Mr Meighan said that he was approached by a man believed to be David Holmes, who had acted as best man at Jeremy Thorpe’s wedding in 1975. They met at The Ritz café in Shepherd’s Bush where he says he was offered a large sum of money and given a gun to go to Devon and kill Norman Scott. He says the was unable to go through with the plan and gave the gun, which was a Mauser, to Andrew Newton. It was this gun that was used to kill Rinka, Norman Scott’s Great Dane. Meighan claimed he gave a statement to police but this evidence was never disclosed at the trial of Jeremy Thorpe and three others for conspiracy to murder Norman Scott.

Andrew Newton appearing as a witness for the prosecution in 1979 said that he had been approached by middle-men acting for Jeremy Thorpe who had offered him £20,000 to arrange the killing of Norman Scott. When the case went to trial he was accused of perjury by Jeremy Thorpe’s defence counsel.

He later received a two-year sentence for possession of a firearm with intent to endanger life after shooting Norman Scott’s dog. Mr Scott had been befriended by a man calling himself Peter Keene in October 1975. When they were driving across Exmoor, ‘Mr Keene’ produced a gun and shot Rinka. According to Mr Scott, he then turned to him and said ‘it’s your turn now’ but the gun jammed. Peter Keene was another alias of Andrew Newton would claimed he had never intended to kill Mr Scott but was attempting to intimidate him into silence.

In 1993 Andrew Newton, who was at that point known as Hann Redwin and was living in Chiswick, had been on holiday in the Alps with his girlfriend Caroline Mayorcas, a cousin of Ruth Mayorcas who recently stood as a candidate for the Turnham Green ward in the local elections. Acting against local advice and despite the lack of any mountaineering experience on behalf of Caroline Mayorcas they went up the Eiger a trip which resulted in Ms Mayorcas falling 900ft to her death. The coroner ruled out foul play.

The profile of the Jeremy Thorpe case had come back to the public’s attention with the airing by the BBC of a dramatization, ‘A Very English Scandal’ starring Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw. Jeremy Thorpe who was the leader of the Liberal party had been accused of plotting to kill Norman Scott with whom he had had a relationship in the sixties when homosexual acts were a criminal offence.

Hugh Grant and Ben Whishaw in 'A Very English Scandal'

A documentary is to be broadcast this Sunday evening (3 June) on BBC Four following the conclusion of the final part of ‘A Very English Scandal.’ It is expected that further revelations will be made about the case including material from a Panorama documentary that wasn’t broadcast because it was made on the assumption Jeremy Thorpe would be found guilty. Copies of the original documentary were ordered to be destroyed but Tom Mangold kept a personal copy, material from which is to be broadcast for the first time. According to the Times, the documentary reveals that there were up to five attempts on Mr Scott’s life.

Gwent Police made a statement saying, “Enquiries were completed which indicated Mr Newton was deceased.

“We have now revisited these enquiries and have identified information, which indicates that Mr Newton may still be alive.

“As a result, further enquiries will be conducted to trace Mr Newton to assess if he is able to assist the investigation.”

Jeremy Thorpe died aged 85 in 2014.

June 4, 2018

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