Wife killer Malcolm Webster denies 'experiments' on three children

CONVICTED wife killer Malcolm Webster has refuted claims that he may have been responsible for the deaths of three children in the Middle East.

Webster, 52, was found guilty at the High Court in Glasgow last month of murdering his first wife, Claire, in a staged car crash in Aberdeenshire in 1994 and attempting to murder his second wife, Felicity Drumm, in New Zealand in 1999.

Since his conviction, allegations have been made in the media linking him to the suspicious deaths of three children in a hospital in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates where he was a nurse for six months.

It was claimed Webster was sacked from the hospital after the children, who had special needs, suffered fatal cardiac arrests while he was on duty. They were all under six years old.

It was also claimed Webster may have "experimented" on the children, possibly drugging them to induce heart attacks.

He was suspended hours after the third death. No charges were brought. The alleged incidents happened in 1989, five years before Webster murdered his wife in the staged accident in a plot to get his hands on 200,000 in insurance payouts.

Reports have also linked Webster to a 1998 fire which destroyed the Shore Porters storage building in Aberdeen's harbour area.

John McLeod, Webster's lawyer, said of the claims: "Not only does he deny them, he has never been (formally) accused of any of them. These issues are not new - they have been well ventilated in the two years it took to prepare the case. They have not got to the stage where an allegation has been made."

Mr McLeod said a joint minute had been agreed during the trial which agreed "implicitly" that Webster was not to blame for the fire at Shore Porters.

He also cast doubts over the allegations linking Webster to the Middle East deaths.

Mr McLeod said: "The information, as I understand it, came from a disgruntled ex. They never formed the basis even of an allegation, let alone a charge."

The Abu Dhabi allegations were made by Elizabeth Brown, a former paediatric nurse and colleague of Webster's.

She said: "He was suspected of harming some of the children, although nothing was proven."

The 53-year-old mother-of-two added: "They rarely do post-mortem examinations in the United Arab Emirates because they don't believe in them - if someone dies, it's Allah's will."

A spokeswoman for Grampian Police said yesterday: "An individual made an allegation to the media in the UK and we have now been given her details and we will be interviewing her in due course."

Webster is currently in Glasgow's Barlinnie jail and is due to be sentenced on 5 July.