Moment topless Holly Willoughby murder plot accused is arrested


Footage of the moment Holly Willoughby murder plot accused Gavin Plumb was arrested has been played to a court.

The 37-year-old was captured on police bodycams as officers forced open his front door and burst into his home on October 4 last year. Shirtless Plumb, who was in a bedroom in the property, is shown being handcuffed within moments of them entering.

He denies masterminding a plot to kidnap, rape and murder the TV presenter.

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In the footage, played to jurors at Chelmsford Crown Court today, the defendant can be heard asking officers "what are you talking about" and "please explain to me what the hell is going on".

Told he was under arrest on suspicion of conspiracy to kidnap, Plumb said "who?" and was told it was Holly Willoughby. The defendant asked "OK, where's that from?" and was told by an officer "that will be explained to you in custody".

He later stated to officers, in the footage from October 4 last year: "I'm not gonna lie, she is a fantasy of mine."

The trial was earlier told that Plumb had unwittingly engaged in an online chat with a US undercover police officer, who he thought was a man called David Nelson, reports The Mirror.

Essex Police has released police body-worn video footage of the arrest of Gavin Plumb
Essex Police has released police body-worn video footage of the arrest of Gavin Plumb -Credit:PA

In the conversation with the undercover officer, Plumb told of his plans to "put her (Ms Willoughby) into a lake at night" when he had finished raping her. The defendant denies soliciting murder, incitement to rape and incitement to kidnap.

A video of Plumb in police custody was also played to jurors, in which the defendant was speaking but the words were inaudible.

Defence barrister Sasha Wass KC said in court: "I wanted the jury to see Mr Plumb was talking freely and to see the size he was then as opposed to now."

The defendant earlier told jurors his current weight was around 24-and-a-half stone. The trial heard he weighed around 30 stone at the time he was taken into custody.

Plumb said he was following legal advice when he later gave no comment in police interview. Earlier in Friday's hearing, Plumb said online chats about the alleged plot are "massively regrettable".

He told the jury his discussions with a man who gave his name as Marc were "dark", but insisted: "It wasn't going to be any more than me and him chatting." He said he did not ask a man who turned out to be an undercover officer for "help" in carrying out the alleged plot.

Essex Police has released police body-worn video footage of the arrest of Gavin Plumb
Essex Police has released police body-worn video footage of the arrest of Gavin Plumb -Credit:PA

He said he got a "rush of excitement" about keeping This Morning presenter Holly in a "dungeon", but again insisted "I knew it was online chat". He said his words were a way to "get my gratification, move on". Giving evidence at Chelsmford Crown Court, Plumb said his WhatsApp communications with Marc were "not the kind of chat I would normally participate in".

He said during his discussions with Marc, he conceded that when he said he needed to "follow her movements" and "set everything up", he was talking about a "fantasy of setting up an abduction". Plumb agreed with his barrister Sasha Wass KC that his chats about Holly "degraded her".

Addressing the defendant in the witness box on Friday, Ms Wass asked: "What effect did your interactions with Marc have?" Plumb replied: "Looking back at it now, it's something that is massively regrettable because it's not the kind of chat I would normally participate in."

The defendant, of Harlow, Essex, denies soliciting murder, incitement to rape and incitement to kidnap.

The trial continues.