Christopher Guest More: Cheshire cannabis farm killer convicted of 2003 murder

  • Published
Christopher Guest MoreImage source, NCA
Image caption,
More was known as Andrew Lamb and working as a yacht captain and businessman in Malta when he was arrested

A television researcher who spent 16 years on the run has been convicted of murdering a man at a cannabis farm.

Christopher Guest More, 43, was one of four men who tortured and killed father-of-two Brian Waters in Tabley, near Knutsford, Cheshire in 2003.

He was arrested in 2019 in Malta, where he was living under a false name.

More was also found guilty of conspiracy to cause grievous bodily harm to a second man who worked at the farm and was also tortured.

Image source, Crown Prosecution Service
Image caption,
Brian Waters was tortured and killed at Burnt House Farm in Tabley on 19 June 2003

More, who had faced a retrial after a jury in May was unable to reach agreement, shook his head as the verdicts were returned at Chester Crown Court.

He had claimed he had befriended drug dealer John Wilson, one of three men previously convicted of Mr Waters' murder, because he thought he could sell a story on him being a police informant to the media.

More said he also thought he would be led to a cannabis farm which he could film for a television documentary.

The jury heard Mr Waters, who was growing cannabis at Burnt House Farm, owed Wilson a drugs debt of £20,000.

More, who had previously done undercover television work with investigative journalist Donal McIntyre, discovered where the cannabis farm was after following Mr Waters' son Gavin, who was 25 at the time.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
The jury was shown images of the inside of a barn where Mr Waters' body was found

Brian Waters was tortured and killed at the farm in front of his daughter Natalie, who had just turned 21, and Gavin on 19 June 2003.

His wife Julie was abducted from the family home and driven to the farm.

Mr Waters and Suleman Razak, who survived the four-hour ordeal, were tied up and suspended from rafters before being beaten, dropped in barrels of liquid, had staple guns used on their bodies and were assaulted with a metal bar.

When police arrived at the scene, following a call made from a phone box by Wilson's driver David Moran, they found a bag containing cigarette ends, drinks bottles and a bag of faeces which all had traces of More's DNA.

James Raven, who did television work with More, and Otis Matthews were convicted of murder at earlier trials.

During the trial, More claimed he had gone to the farm that morning to steal cannabis equipment, but left when he had an argument with Raven and realised Wilson, who was not at the scene, had discovered he was working undercover.

He left the country for Spain two days later and, after travelling to South Africa, Mozambique and Turkey, settled in Malta, where he was living under the name Andrew Lamb and working as a yacht captain and businessman when he was arrested.

Image source, PA Media
Image caption,
More was caught on CCTV leaving the UK via Liverpool Airport two days after the killing

In a statement, the family of Mr Waters said what happened at Burnt House Farm had had "a significant and long-lasting effect".

"We will never be able to forget events of that day and, even now, more than 18 years down the line, we feel the pain on a daily basis with constant flashbacks," they said.

"We have remained a close-knit family and have provided much-needed support to each other - but this has been an isolating experience for us.

"Not only have we lived in fear of reprisals, we have also struggled to trust others as we normally would."

Judge Sir Peter Openshaw said More would be sentenced on Friday.

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