Did handsome Neil Heywood have a romantic affair with Gu Kailai?
Yes. Reports suggest they had an affair due to her husband’s ‘lack of passion’. Chinese websites first claimed they were both in love. ‘There was a ‘definite’ romantic attachment between Heywood and Gu,” said Wang Kang, a Chongqing scholar with contacts inside Bo’s circle. He alleged that Gu, a lawyer, found solace in him as she was denied ‘normal passion’ from her husband. Gu also confessed to Wang having had an affair with Heywood due to her husband’s ‘lack of passion’.
Gu Kailai went to Britain in 2001 and bought a top-floor terrace apartment in Keystone House near the Bournemouth seafront for £250,000. She floated a company named Adad Ltd with one Patrick Henri Devillers, a French architect and another member of Bo’s circle, and had her business card under the name Horus Kai, the name Gu used in her foreign business dealings.
The ‘shell’ firm – one that did not do any business or have any assets – never filed accounts. Gu, despite being a high-profile lawyer in China with links to American law firms, never practiced law in London. It was later dissolved in 2003 without any money passed through its accounts. It is thought that Gu might have set up Adad Ltd to give herself an official British base.
Heywood is also believed to have stayed with Gu in Keystone House, in Bournemouth, UK. It was their apparent love nest. He was ‘seen pinching the bottom of Gu Kailai on way up to the flat’.
“He stayed in the first room on the right. Most mornings he leaned out of the window to have a fag. She was always in the kitchen,” a source said. The powerful Chinese politician’s wife was the young British businessman’s mistress.
Heywood’s falling-out with Gu followed a period in which she had grown distant from her ambitious, perpetually busy husband and turned to Heywood as a soul mate.
“Bo and Gu Kailai had not been a proper husband and wife for years…Gu Kailai and Heywood had a deep personal relationship and she took the break up between them deeply to heart,” said Wang Kang, a well-connected Chongqing businessman who has learned some details of the case from Chinese officials.
An earlier theory put forward into Heywood’s death suggests he was killed after Bo found out the affair. Heywood was said to have confided in a friend about the alleged affair with Gu, saying it had ‘left his life under threat’. He later called off the relationship as Gu was becoming increasingly paranoid.
Two days after Heywood’s death, Gu met Heywood’s widow Wang Lulu in a Beijing cafe, accompanied by two armed policemen, and begged Lulu to agree to a swift cremation without a post-mortem examination. His corpse was taken hastily to the municipal crematorium and unceremoniously burned. His ashes were later handed to his family in an urn.
Police investigating the murder have made dozens of arrests, including that of billionaire Xu Ming, one of China’s richest men, and a city official, Xia Deliang, who confessed that he prepared the poison and handed it to an employee of Bo.
The government is trying to locate the massive foreign assets held by Gu Kailai and her family members. Gu is in police custody and Bo is stripped of all political posts and under house arrest.
Hong Kong Standard claimed that Gu is suffering from terminal bone cancer and has only ‘a year or two’ to live. So she became increasingly flirtatious and ‘promiscuous’. Her mentality was ‘you betrayed me, and so I’ll get my revenge’. If convicted Gu will get a death sentence.
Ann Heywood, 74-year-old mother of Neil who lives in south London, said the news had come as a total shock and she was horrified to hear that her son may have been murdered.
“All I want to say is that I am shocked at the news, but I cannot talk any more. It is heartbreaking to even think there was foul play involved. I went to China often to see him. I still do see my daughter-in-law and grandchildren, and they were always very happy.”
Hey wood’ widow, Wang Lulu, remains at the family’s exclusive gated villa compound in Beijing with her children aged seven and 11, who hold British passports. She is preparing to leave China for good to Britain as she is afraid that people who killed her husband might now come after her family.
Mahatma Gandhi said : “Seven blunders of the world that lead to violence: wealth without work, pleasure without conscience, knowledge without character, commerce without morality, science without humanity, worship without sacrifice, and politics without principle.”
Heywood’s grey Jaguar with Union Jack sticker and license plate ‘N007W3’ that indicated his passion for 007 James Bond movies, lies idle in the compound. But where is the owner? Should James Bond come?
M.S. Shah Jahan is the CEO of Taipan Trading Company, a Gem and Precious Stone Consultancy Company based in Colombo, Sri Lanka.