PUBLISHED: 12:11 02 March 2006 | UPDATED: 14:36 12 May 2010
PEST control expert Christopher Nudds has started a life jail sentence after being convicted of murder. After a hearing at Northampton Crown Court that lasted more than two weeks, a jury returned a verdict that Nudds murdered 21-year-old traveller Fred Mo
PEST control expert Christopher Nudds has started a life jail sentence after being convicted of murder. After a hearing at Northampton Crown Court that lasted more than two weeks, a jury returned a verdict that Nudds murdered 21-year-old traveller Fred Moss. Nudds had denied the charge. Now Nudds is being linked with the murder of ex-Army officer Riley Workman, 83, who was shot on the doorstep of his cottage in Furneux Pelham in January, 2004. But a statement from Hertfordshire police said: "We have monitored the investigation and trial of Christopher Nudds. "The investigation into the murder of Riley Workman is still an on-going and active inquiry. "From the outset Herts police have been receptive to any investigative avenue that would lead to the identification of Riley's killer, or which would help us to understand the motive behind this terrible crime. "We continue to actively pursue lines of inquiry," After being convicted, Nudds, 27, was told he must spend a minimum of 30 years in prison. The court was told that Nudds lured Mr Moss to a remote spot in the countryside, where he shot him in the head and then chopped up his body into several parts, using a large knife and hacksaw. Police believe he burned the traveller's remains on farmland where he had shooting rights to rid the area of pests. Using gallons of kerosene, he kept the fire going for hours to ensure nothing of his victim was left, they said. No trace of Mr Moss has ever been found. Passing sentence, Judge Charles Wide said: "I have no doubt that this was clearly planned, for reasons which are obscure, but nonetheless, carefully planned. "You must have lured him to a remote spot, where you killed him." The judge said it involved Nudds dismembering Mr Moss' body and disposing of it. "What it means is that this grieving family have no grave to grieve over," he said. During the trial, it was put to Nudds that on the day of the killing - November 30, 2004 - he had made a gay pass at the younger man, who had reacted adversely and threatened to expose him. It was also the prosecution's case that there was a problem between the two men, who knew each other through their interest in hare coursing. The evening before his death, Mr Moss was known to be worried, and that a "problem" would be sorted out the next day. The prosecution said that Nudds had lured Mr Moss to Highfield Farm, at Litlington. Nudds was a frequent visitor to the farm, having been granted shooting rights by the owner to clear the area of pests. He would get rid of pigeons, trap rabbits, and he would hunt at night, going "lamping". Police are sure Nudds had lured Mr Moss to the farm, with the suggestion that they could go hare-coursing. Mr Moss left his van at nearby Steeple Morden at around 1pm that day, and got into Nudd's Range Rover with his dog Nellie, and from there they drove to the farm. Police think Nudds shot Mr Moss in the head with a small calibre gun, between 3.15pm and 3.37pm. To divert attention away from the farm, Nudds then drove Mr Moss' dog nine miles north and abandoned it in a remote country lane. This led to a huge search for Mr Moss getting under way in the days following, which involved hundreds of members of the travelling community. It meant Nudds was able to return to the spot and make sure he had left nothing behind to link him with the killing. After discovering Nudds had lied to police about when he had last seen Mr Moss, police arrested him, and he was charged with perverting the course of justice. Held on remand in Bedford Prison, he told a cellmate how he had killed Mr Moss by shooting him in the head with a low calibre hand gun. Nudds told the cellmate that after shooting Mr Moss, he had dismembered the body with a knife and hacksaw. Then he had transported the severed arms, legs, and torso, which were wrapped in hessian sacks, in the boot of his car to a spot where he could burn them without being disturbed. The knife had been carefully cleaned, but a minute trace of blood was discovered where the blade entered the hilt. A DNA profile was obtained which was found to match Mr Moss' profile. His DNA was also discovered on the hacksaw, and an examination of the Range Rover found Mr Moss's blood with his DNA in the boot. The jury took just under eight hours to find Nudds guilty. The judge ordered he must serve a minimum of 30 years, less the 446 days he has already spent in custody.