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Liverpool Echo
Liverpool Echo
Joe Thomas

Former detective believes Liverpool's most wanted could be kingpin's 'henchman'

A former Scotland Yard detective leading the hunt for Liverpool’s most wanted man believes the fugitive could be the “henchman” for a criminal kingpin.

Peter Bleksley thinks 6ft 6in Kevin Parle is too recogniseable to play a public role in the gang, which may be operating under the cloak of seemingly legitimate businesses.

Parle is wanted by detectives in connection with two horrific murders in Liverpool, each more than a decade ago.

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Ex-Metropolitan Police officer Mr Bleksley, who starred in Channel 4 show Hunted, has now spent several years waging an independent campaign to track down Parle.

He says the investigation has led to multiple reports of sightings that undermine underworld rumours that Parle is dead.

Peter Bleksley, The Chief from Channel 4's Hunted, is searching for notorious fugitive Kevin Parle (ITV)

In the latest episode of his BBC podcast series Manhunt: Finding Kevin Parle, released on Tuesday, Mr Bleksley discusses tip offs that place Parle as providing “security” for a major gang.

That outfit is described as a drugs network with access to vast sums of money potentially laundered by a man referred to by Mr Bleksley as ‘Ian’.

He tells listeners: “I have what I believe to be very credible information that says Kevin Parle is Ian’s henchman.”

The operation has links the UK and Spain according to Mr Bleksley’s intelligence.

Wanted Liverpool man Kevin Parle (PA)

The latest podcast also hears how a spooked tourist believes he was confronted by wanted Kevin Parle in Spain in late 2019, describing having his path blocked by a man matching his description before an intervention by a security guard working nearby.

He recalled: “It reminded me of the playground bully kind of behaviour - it was very difficult to describe, just sort of ‘what is it you are after here, what are you gaining from this, what are you trying to achieve?’

“I was confused really, yes I was unnerved, certainly, but I just didn’t understand it.”

A former colleague of Parle’s at a Liverpool garage described him as “mad as a box of frogs” and said he was “streetwise” and “hung around with some dodgy people in south Liverpool” - but that he did not believe he was capable of the crimes he had been linked to.

The hunt for Parle has been ongoing for more than 15 years.

One of the UK’s most wanted suspects, detectives on Merseyside want to speak to him over the shooting murders of Liam Kelly and Lucy Hargreaves.

Mr Kelly was just 16 when he was shot dead on Grafton Street, Dingle, in 2004.

Parle was questioned in connection with his murder but was released on bail - which he failed to answer.

He is the subject of a European Arrest Warrant in relation to that investigation.

The following year 22-year-old mum Lucy Hargreaves was shot as she slept on a living room sofa in her Walton home. Petrol was then poured around the room and set alight.

Detectives also want to speak to him as part of inquiries into the mum’s killing.

You can listen to the latest episode of Manhunt: Finding Kevin Parle here

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