Essex

John 'Goldfinger' Palmer murder: Joggers could hold 'vital information'

Women jogging in Weald Country Park Image copyright Essex Police
Image caption Police say two women jogging in Weald Country Park could hold "vital information" about John "Goldfinger" Palmer's murder

Detectives investigating the murder of a notorious criminal say they want to speak to two women who were jogging nearby at the time he was shot.

John "Goldfinger" Palmer, 64, was shot in the chest six times outside his home in South Weald, Essex, in June 2015.

Essex Police said the killing had "all the hallmarks of a professional hit".

The force has released a photo of two potential witnesses who were jogging in Weald Country Park who may hold "vital information" about the crime.

Palmer, who allegedly amassed a fortune in a time-share scam, died after his killer climbed over a fence and shot him in an area not covered by CCTV, detectives believe.

Image copyright PA
Image caption John "Goldfinger" Palmer was jailed for eight years in 2001 for a £20m timeshare fraud involving 16,000 victims

His body was found in the garden by his son's girlfriend on 24 June at about 17:30 BST.

Palmer had recently had surgery and it was initially thought he had suffered a cardiac arrest.

It is thought this surgery was common knowledge among friends and family and could have been deliberately used to disguise the injuries.

A week later, a post-mortem examination found the convicted conman had been shot in the chest six times, which prompted an investigation by the police watchdog.

Image copyright PA
Image caption John Palmer's nickname derives from his connection to the 1983 £25m Brink's-Mat gold bullion robbery

Police have previously said there was "speculation" Palmer was linked to other organised crime such as the Hatton Garden raid.

Det Ch Insp Stephen Jennings said Palmer's "significant criminal history" meant he may have been targeted by "a person or group of people who may have commissioned the killing".

Palmer was due to stand trial in Spain at the time of his death, which police say is a "significant main line of inquiry".

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