Man guilty of attempting to hire a ‘hit man’ to kill his common law wife


Graham Burgess has today been jailed for six years following a guilty plea yesterday for trying to hire a ‘hit man’ to kill his wife.

When Staffordshire Police became aware of the 45-year-old defendants plans an undercover operation was commenced to ensure the safety of the intended victim and gather evidence. This  involved the deployment of a police officer posing as a contract killer.

A number of meetings followed between the defendant and the purported 'hit man'  during which discussion took place about the manner in which the murder would be carried out and the fee involved.

The plan involved staging a hit and run accident and the defendant agreed to pay £10,000 for the killing.

As Burgess waited at home believing that the murder had been carried out, officers swooped on his address and arrested him.

He was later charged with soliciting murder following advice from the West Midlands Crown Prosecution Service's Complex Casework Unit (CCU).

Warren Stanier, Senior Crown Prosecutor from the West Midlands CCU, said:

"Throughout this prosecution Graham Burgess maintained that he knew the 'hit man' was an undercover police officer and that he only continued with the meetings and discussions for the  thrill of the experience. However, by his own admission this was not the case.

"The Complex Casework Unit worked closely with Staffordshire Police to ensure that Mr Burgess was brought to justice. Whilst the motive behind these plans may never be fully known what is clear is that Burgess encouraged his partner to take out a substantial life insurance policy shortly before all of this happened.

"It is hoped that the conclusion of the case may bring some closure to what can only have been a very harrowing experience for the intended victim and her family."