- Suicide scientist Dr David Kelly warned a friend that
"dark actors" were working against him just hours before his
- Dr Kelly revealed his fears shortly before killing himself
after being dragged into the row over the Government's justification for
war in Iraq.
- In an email to American author Judy Miller, sent just
before he left his home for the last time, he referred to "many dark
actors playing games".
- But, according to Miller, Dr Kelly gave no indication
he was depressed or planning to take his own life.
- He told her he would wait "until the end of the
week" before deciding his next move following his traumatic appearance
before a House of Commons select committee.
- Yesterday, Miller said she believed the "dark forces"
Dr Kelly was referring to were in the secret services and Ministry of Defence.
- They have already been accused of using Dr Kelly as a
"scapegoat" in a bitter row between the Government, whose offensive
was led by Tony Blair's spin doctor Alastair Campbell, and the BBC.
- Miller, who lives in New York, said: "Based on earlier
conversations with Dr Kelly, the words seemed to refer to people within
the Ministry of Defence and Britain's intelligence agencies with whom he
had often sparred over interpretations of intelligence reports."
- Friends fear he could not cope with the ordeal of being
publicly outed as one of the expert sources used by BBC reporter Andrew
Gilligan for a story claiming Government spin doctors had hyped intelligence
reports to justify war.
- Yesterday, it emerged he had been threatened with criminal
prosecution and the loss of his pension if he did not co-operate with a
Ministry of Defence inquiry sanctioned by Downing Street.
- And, days before his death, he had been dragged before
a Parliamentary committee, questioned ferociously and ordered to identify
every journalist he had ever met.
- He killed himself just days after his traumatic appearance
before the Foreign Affairs Committee, which his wife claimed had made him
"very stressed and angry".
- Dr Kelly's body was found near his home in Oxfordshire
- Police said yesterday he had bled to death from a wound
on his left wrist. A knife and an empty packet of Co- Proxamol painkilling
tablets were found beside his body but police would not confirm that a
letter was also discovered.
- Speaking at Wantage police station, Acting Superintendent
David Purnell confirmed the body found on Harrowdown Hill at 9.20am on
Friday had been formally identified as 59-year-old Dr Kelly.
- He said: "A post-mortem has revealed that the cause
of death was haemorrhaging from a wound to his left wrist.
- "The injury is consistent with having been caused
by a bladed object.
- "We have recovered a knife and an open packet of
Co-Proxamol tablets at the scene.
- "While our enquiries are continuing, there is no
indication at this stage of any other party being involved."
- Dr Kelly died just three days after his televised appearance
before the House of Commons' Foreign Affairs Committee.
- He had been summoned to give evidence after being named
by the MoD and Downing Street as the source of the controversial story
by BBC correspondent Gilligan.
- The story claimed the Government had deliberately "sexed
up" a document, giving its justification for invading Iraq by claiming
Saddam Hussein could deploy weapons of mass destruction in just 45 minutes.
- At the committee hearing, Dr Kelly, appearing ashen and
barely audible, said he did not believe he had been Gilligan's main source.
- The MoD has always insisted Dr Kelly volunteered to appear
before the committee after admitting to MoD bosses that he had spoken to
Gilligan before his story was aired at the end of May.
- The MoD claimed it had reprimanded Dr Kelly for speaking
to a journalist but said that had been the only action taken against him.
- And they claimed he had voluntarily come forward after
realising he may have been Gilligan's source.
- But he was only questioned by his bosses after a colleague
alerted Dr Kelly's line manager.
- And, yesterday, it also emerged that Dr Kelly had been
warned by MoD bosses that he could be prosecuted under the Official Secrets
Act and could lose his pension - a year before his planned retirement.
- Shortly before his death, Dr Kelly returned from an MoD
safehouse where, it is claimed, he was again grilled by MoD bosses.
- He provided a list of journalists he had spoken to, as
requested by the Foreign Affairs Committee.
- It was in the last few hours before he set off on a walk
from his home in Southmoor, near Abingdon, telling his wife that he was
"stretching his legs", that he sent his final emails.
- In one, to Professor Alastair Hay, he said he was looking
forward to returning to Baghdad where he worked as a weapons inspector.
- The email said: "Many thanks for your support. Hopefully
it will soon pass and I can get to Baghdad and get on with the real job."
- Another associate, who received an email from Dr Kelly
shortly before he left the house, said the message was "combative".
- He had told the friend he was determined to overcome
the scandal and again spoke enthusiastically about returning to Iraq.
- And to Ms Miller, who he helped write a book on the threat
of biological weapons, he sent the email mentioning "dark players",
which gives damning evidence to the scandal he had been embroiled in.
- Ironically, it also emerged yesterday that Dr Kelly,
one of the leading authorities on Iraq's weapons of mass destruction, believed
Saddam posed a real threat.
- However, he had told colleagues that although he believed
Saddam had a biological weapons programme, Britain and America would not
be able to find the weapons "bolted together".
- And he is believed to have told a colleague that the
Government claim that Saddam could deploy weapons of mass destruction in
45 minutes was totally inaccurate, as it would take handlers the same time
to even start filling shells with biological compounds.
- Yesterday, the judicial inquiry announced by Tony Blair
hours after being told of Dr Kelly's death was branded a delaying tactic
intended to postpone the "blame game".
- The tactic of announcing an inquiry to stall further
discussion on embarrassing issues has been tried several times by governments
desperate to sweep something under the carpet.
- But it spectacularly failed to save Blair's pal Peter
Mandelson, the former Northern Ireland Secretary who found himself embroiled
in a particularly nasty row over passport applications from the wealthy
- Mandelson was forced to quit the Cabinet over the row
- only to be cleared by the Hammond Inquiry of the accusations he acted