Former spy Richard Tomlinson revealed that the crash that killed Diana was bore and ‘eerie similarity’ to an MI6 assassination plot
A former spy told the Diana inquest today he believed the Princess could have been murdered by MI6 officers.
Sacked secret agent, Richard Tomlinson, said he realised there could have been a conspiracy to assassinate Diana after seeing a documentary alleging there was a flash as her car entered a Paris tunnel.
The ex-MI6 officer said that after watching the film he had remembered an MI6 training session in which he was shown how a strobe gun could be used to kill targets.
He also spoke about MI6 plans to assassinate a top Balkan leader in a way that was almost identical to Diana’s fatal crash.
Speaking via videolink, Mr Tomlinson, understood to be in Marseille, spoke about a secret agent named only as “A” who had drawn up the Balkan plan.
The court heard that Mr Tomlinson, who was recruited by MI6 in 1991 after studying at Cambridge, told a Scotland Yard team investigating Diana’s death: “MI6 do have a capacity to stage accidents whether by helicopter, aeroplane or car and also that the strobe light was shown to us by the SBS at Poole during our training.”
He explained that drunk driver Henri Paul would have been the “first choice” for MI6 to recruit and that one of the paparazzi following the princess may also have been in the pay of the service.
Mr Paul died in the Paris crash that killed the princess and her lover Dodi Fayed on 31 August 1997.
Mr Tomlinson, who was jailed for a year in 1997 for breaking the Official Secrets Act, said he became aware of a possible assassination bid in mid-1998.
Richard Tomlinson claimed that MI6 could have used a strobe light to kill Diana in a car crash
He said: “I happened to see a thing on TV about it and that made me wonder whether something that I had seen within MI6 when I was working there might have been relevant.î
He told the inquest that a colleague, referred to as “A”, had shown him a document proposing the assassination of Serbian president Slobodan Milosevic.
Mr Tomlinson claimed in his book The Big Breach – published after his dismissal from the service – that the options outlined included staging a crash in a tunnel involving a blinding flash of light from a strobe gun while Mr Milosevic was at a peace conference in Geneva, the court heard.
But the jury was told that in an earlier draft of the book he had spoken instead of a drive-by ambush.
He admitted during his evidence today that he could have become confused about the details of what was in the document but said such specifics were a “distraction” from the central issue of whether MI6 was ever involved in assassination attempts in principle.
He told the inquest it would be difficult but “not impossible” to assassinate somebody.
He also said he had read documents alleging there was a French source at the Ritz hotel. “There is no doubt that Henri Paul would have been of interest to the intelligence services. If you wanted to recruit one person within the Ritz hotel to work for you it would be a security officer. He would be your first choice,” he said. The inquest continues.