Man arrested over death of dealer Martin Hamilton

Martin Hamilton's body was found in woodlands near West Calder last month, months after his disappearance. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Martin Hamilton's body was found in woodlands near West Calder last month, months after his disappearance. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

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A MAN has been arrested over the murder of one of Scotland’s most wanted criminals whose body was found in woods in West Lothian a week before Christmas.

Martin Hamilton was released from prison in September 2014 but was being sought by police for breaching the terms of his licence.

The body of the 53-year-old was found by a dog walker in a remote area of woodland near the B7015 road in West Calder, on December 17.

Police launched a murder inquiry and said he could have been killed as far back as April 2015, shortly after he was last seen alive in Glasgow.

A 51-year-old man has now been arrested and charged over the death and is due to appear at Livingston Sheriff Court on Monday.

Officers are to continue inquiries into the case.

Detective Superintendent Kenny Graham said: “Our inquiries are ongoing and following this arrest we will be revisiting a number of people we have spoken to. We are also keen to hear from anyone else who may have information which may assist but who have not felt able to come forward before.

“We still have searches to conduct near the Five Sisters Business Park, as well as forensic work and other local inquiries in Blackburn, and this will be in conjunction with local officers who remain on high-visibility patrol in the area.

“I’m pleased with the support we have received from the local community in Blackburn – as well as information which has assisted my investigation, we have seen great engagement on a range of matters.”

He continued: “We are committed to a thorough investigation of the murder of Martin Hamilton, and to supporting the people of Blackburn whilst we do this, and would urge any member of the community with information or concerns to get in touch.”

Hamilton had been convicted of a number of crimes including drug dealing and torture, and was nicknamed the Blackhill Butcher after the Glasgow housing estate where he operated from.

The B7015 by the Five Sisters Business Park was closed for about a month while forensic examinations were carried out but has now reopened.