Court hears murdered woman worked for SDCEA

Lynda Spence
Lynda Spence

SOUTHSIDE woman Lynda Spence had been recruited to spy on an Albania criminal gang, a court heard.

Ms Spence, from Pollokshields went missing aftre visiting her parents in the Partick area of the city in April 2011.

Four men – David Parker (37), Paul Smith (47), Phillip Wade (42) and Colin Coats (42) – are standing trial accused of abducting, torturing and murdering her.

It is alleged they forced Ms Spence into a car and drove her to a location in West Kilbride before torturing her.

The trial at the High Court in Glasgow heard that Ms Spence was working as an informant for the Scottish Crime and Drugs Enforcement Agency and also for the Serious Organised Crime Agency concerning the work of an Albanian gang operating in Scotland.

It was alleged to the court that the four accused tortured Ms Spence to try and extract financial information from her.

During cross-examination, defence QC Derek Ogg, representing Coats questioned detective sergeant Aileen Boyle.

He asked: “Did it become clear early in the investigation there was a fear that Lynda Spence had been done to death?”

DS Boyle replied: “There was concern for her safety.”

Mr Ogg continued: “She was recruited specifically to provide information not on Colin Coats, or anyone else in the dock, but on Albanian Sokal Zefaj — you know who he is?”

DS Boyle replied: “He is a businessman and we had information Lynda Spence may have been married to him at some point.”

Mr Ogg said: “She was in fact married to him and it was for this reason that she was recruited by the SDCEA and the UK-based Serious Organised Crime Agency. Did you know this?”

DS Boyle replied: “No.”

Mr Ogg then asked: “Would you agree with me that would place Lynda Spence in very serious risk of her life if it was to be disclosed she was informing on an Albanian organised crime gang?”

DS Boyle replied: “If that was the case.”

Solicitor General Lesley Thomson QC asked DS Boyle if there was any evidence that an Albanian gang was involved in the alleged murder of Ms Spence.

DS Boye replied: “Absolutely not.”

All four deny the all charges put to them.

The trial before Lord Pentland continues.