Fraud charge PC is found dead in forest

Suspended constable died in a fume-filled car
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The Independent Online
A policeman cleared seven years ago of murdering his wife in Portugal has been found dead in a fume-filled car.

Constable Alan Waldock, 41, was due to appear before a Northumberland court tomorrow charged in connection with a pounds 13,000 credit card fraud.

His body was discovered early on Sunday morning on a deserted track deep in the Forest of Dean in Gloucestershire. It is understood that Gloucestershire police have found a number of notes. A post-mortem examination was due to be carried out yesterday.

Relatives, including PC Waldock's 13-year-old son, Christopher, were said to have been shocked by his death.

Inspector Dean Walker, of Gloucestershire Police, said police officers found the constable in his car on an isolated track in the forest.

The inspector added: "He was discovered in an Austin Metro car which we believe was his. We cannot say what the cause of death was until the results of a post-mortem examination are released. But there are no suspicious circumstances."

The Gloucestershire and Northumbria forces have launched a joint investigation into his death.

Last month PC Waldock, who was suspended from duty with the Northumbria force, was accused of 10 deception charges at Morpeth police station.

PC Waldock had earlier hit the headlines when he was charged with killing his wife, Doris, 33, while they were holidaying Faro, in the Algarve, Portugal, in 1988.

Mrs Waldock had drowned in a whirlpool bath at the couple's time-share villa at the Vale Navio holiday complex.

The court in Faro decided she slipped and banged her head. Her husband, who had always protested his innocence, was acquitted of her murder by judges in Faro of after a 12-day trial which attracted world-wide media attention.

In August 1990, a coroner recorded an open verdict on Mrs Waldock's death.

Four years ago, PC Waldock and his son moved from the Northumberland area to Cinderford in Gloucestershire, where they set up home with a woman he had met while on holiday in Jersey, but he continued to work for Northumbria police.

Last year, PC Waldock was arrested at a relative's house in Northumberland. He was detained at a police station for questioning over allegations relating to the use of a number of credit cards.

He was suspended from the Northumbria force in July 1995 during an investigation into the allegations and was eventually charged to appear before South- East Northumberland magistrates at Bedlington, tomorrow. Before his suspension PC Waldock had been based at Clifford Street, Byker, Newcastle, where he worked part-time in the central operations control room.

Mrs Waldock's distraught parents and her brother, Det Sgt Alan Barber, of the Northumbria police fraud squad, always held PC Waldock responsible for her death.

Det Sgt Barber said yesterday that news of his father's death had left Christopher distressed and in a state of shock. He was being comforted by relatives last night.

He added: "Christopher has been through a lot after the death of his mother. He was in the care of my parents while Alan Waldock was in jail in Portugal. But he went back to live with his father after he was cleared of the murder. Christopher loved both his parents."

A report will be made to the coroner.

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