British contract killer arrested in Spain is now in court

LAST UPDATED: 15 May, 2011 @ 22:37
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British contract killer arrested in Spain is now in court

A BRITISH contract killer arrested in Spain is in court for fatally shooting a young father in front of his son and daughter.

James ‘Jimbles’ Tomkins, 61, shot 24-year-old Rocky Dawson in the back ‘without warning’ as the victim put his children, aged two and six, in the car outside his parents’ home in Hornchurch, Essex.

The court heard how Tomkins fired the shots from a Land Rover Freelander in a ‘deliberate, calculated and cold-blooded’ drive-by shooting on May 2006.

He later fled the country and spent four years on the run in Spain becoming one of Britain’s Most Wanted.

When police discovered him in the up-market resort of Puerto Banus in Marbella last year – following a four-year manhunt by officers working on behalf of the Metropolitan police – he had a fake Irish passport under the name of Michael Lynch.

But despite the lengthy investigation, police are still unable to establish a motive for the murder.

Prosecutor David Hislop QC said: “There remains a terrible possibility that Rocky Dawson’s killers had mistaken him for someone else.”

He continued: “It was clearly very carefully planned in advance. The Freelander had recently been stolen and was fitted with false number plates. It had been cleaned of fingerprints before they embarked on the killing.

“The two men were sufficiently confident to shoot him as he tended to his children, no doubt thinking their victim’s attention would be on his children rather than passing cars.

Hislop added: “Horrifically, you may think, Mr Dawson was shot in front of those two young children.”

The getaway driver, Christopher Pearman, of Waltham Abbey, was jailed for life in 2007 after pleading guilty to the murder.

Tomkins denies murder and the trial continues.

A verdict is expected later this week.

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