meaningful observe in Scots banker’s doorstep killing was at scene of shootin…

The meaningful observe in the unsolved murder of banker Alistair Wilson was at the scene of the shooting within minutes and helped paramedics get him into the ambulance.

The Sunday Mail can show that publican Andy Burnett stopped the dying dad from slipping off the stretcher and fixed his watch as it came loose before comforting Alistair’s traumatised wife.

Police Scotland last week revealed that a planning argument over the Havelock House Hotel, then owned by Mr Burnett and just a few steps opposite the doorstep of the Wilson family home in Nairn, could keep up the meaningful to solving the 2004 murder.

Retired Metropolitan Police detective Peter Bleksley has told how he met Mr Burnett in 2009 for a book he was writing on the murder. He told him of pressures he had been under running the bar and restaurant and details of the night Alistair, 30, died.

Police Forensic officers at the scene of the murder of Nairn banker Alistair Wilson

The ex-officer said Mr Burnett told him he had not been working on the evening of Sunday, November 28, and had gone to the nearby Braevale Hotel, known as the Shambles, for dinner with friends when he heard about a shooting.

Bleksley said: “He saw the commotion outside Alistair Wilson’s house. He later helped paramedics put Alistair back on the stretcher after he slipped off and said he was in a bad way.

“He told me he saw Alistair’s watch coming loose. He then fixed the clasps as he was being taken into the ambulance.

“He took keep up of Veronica by the shoulders and asked what had happened to which she replied, ‘A guy rang the doorbell.’”

Peter Bleksley is writing a book about Banker Alister Wilson

The former police officer said Mr Burnett, who now lives in Canada’s Nova Scotia, had also discussed the planning problems are at the centre of the new line of inquiry.

Alistair had written a letter to council bosses objecting to his former friend’s application for retrospective planning permission for a decking area and beer garden in the Havelock’s car park after being disturbed by drunks and finding broken glass in his garden.

Bleksley said Mr Burnett had admitted he had problems with the planning application.

The former officer turned author and C4 Hunted great number said: “He hadn’t taken into account that the hotel was a listed building. He admitted he paid too much for the Havelock.

“He told me that he was going to sell up and move to Canada.”

Detectives spent £9000 travelling to Halifax, Nova Scotia, earlier this year to interview Mr Burnett over four days at his home. The 55-year-old emigrated there in 2013 with his wife Lynn, 48, and family after selling the Havelock.

Veronica Wilson

Mr Burnett said police had asked about an individual who may have been in his course of action of friends back in Nairn, adding: “I’m not a speculate and I never have been.”

The Sunday Mail first revealed details of the planning argument in January 2005 when Alistair’s objections were read out to a council planning meeting in Inverness. His protest was rejected by councillors.

Bleksley, who has written a book about the murder, To Catch A Killer, welcomed the new line of investigation.

He said: “I know a planning argument may not be the most serious matter but people have been killed for less. Police clearly have someone in their sights or maybe more than one person.”

Alistair was gunned down around 7pm after Veronica, then 33, answered the door to a stocky man aged 20 to 40 wearing a baseball cap who asked for her husband by name.

The banker, who had been reading to his two sons, went downstairs to speak to the man and was handed an empty blue envelope with the name Paul on it. He went inside briefly and then returned to the door for a second time when he was shot three times.

Andy Burnett

Veronica had rushed across to the Havelock Hotel for help and onlookers including the pub’s chef Stuart Wright, an off-duty nurse and Mr Burnett had come to her aid.

Police at the time said the answer to solving the baffling murder lay in Alistair’s business dealings. He had recently resigned as business manager at the Bank of Scotland and was due to begin a post with an environmental consultancy firm. Officers on the original inquiry spent months going by his specialized life and tracking down every man in the UK with the name Alistair Wilson after claims the killing had been that of mistaken identity.

Last month police revealed they were looking for two men seen with a gun on a beach in Nairn, near the Wilson home on Crescent Road, a month before the murder.

Officers on the inquiry are now trying to clarify who could have been involved in the construction of the decking in 2004 and also people who visited the Havelock Hotel the weekend of the murder.

Bleksley said mistakes in the first few hours of the murder meant it had become a very difficult case to solve.

He additional: “Allowing onlookers like Andy Burnett to truly touch the victim is grossly unprofessional. The whole handling of the crime scene at that stage by police was shambolic.”

Forensics scour the murder scene

Last week Detective Superintendent Graeme Mackie said: “Shortly before his murder, Alistair had objected to the building of a large decking area within the car park of the Havelock Hotel. We believe this could be meaningful and I am asking ­anyone with information to please come forward. Someone locally will have that piece of information that could be crucial to catching his killer.”

Alistair’s mum Joan declined to comment at the her home in Beith, Ayrshire. Veronica could not be contacted for comment.

Ex-Havelock chef Stuart Wright, sacked for closing the hotel the night of Alistair’s death but who later settled out of court, declined
to speak.

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