Man convicted of murdering gym owner outside home

Gary More was fatally shot after being lured from his home in Airdrie on September 6 2018.

Man convicted of murdering gym owner outside home Facebook

A man has been convicted of the assassination of a gym owner yards from his doorstep.

Neil Anderson, 45, acted with others in the fatal shooting of Gary More, 32, in Airdrie, South Lanarkshire, on September 6, 2018.

Anderson lured Mr More from his home moments before a gunman – who has never been identified – emerged from a car and repeatedly shot him on the head and body.

The victim had been warned by police about a potential threat to his safety weeks before the killing.

On Friday, Anderson was convicted at the High Court in Glasgow of murdering Mr More.

Getaway driver Thomas Guthrie, 25 – paid six figures to take part in the shooting – pled guilty to murder before the trial.

After the verdict, Judge Lord Mulholland told the pair: “This was an appalling crime that you have been convicted of and pled guilty to.

“It was nothing short of an assassination of a young man outside his front door and the grief that causes his family.

“As you know there is only one sentence for this which is life imprisonment.”

Jurors were shown CCTV of Anderson, of Bothwell, South Lanarkshire, arriving at Mr More’s house in a hired Berlingo van shortly before the murder.

Anderson and Mr More were then seen chatting at the front of the property before a white Skoda pulled up beside them.

The gunman left the car and repeatedly fired at Mr More as Anderson walked off screen.

The shooter then sprinted back into the car with driver Guthrie racing off.

The court heard Anderson stayed at the scene for around 13 minutes and dialled 999 before leaving.

The Skoda was later found torched near Milngavie, East Dunbartonshire.

Mr More’s cause of death was “gunshot wounds to the head and neck”, with one passing completely through his brain.

Anderson denied in evidence of being involved in a plot to lure Mr More out of his home stating it was: “So far from the truth, it’s unbelievable.”

Mr Ewing asked Anderson had he pressured Mr More over “drug debts”.

Anderson and his 37-year-old brother David were cleared mid trial of being involved in cocaine dealing after the allegation was dropped.

Neil Anderson told the advocate depute: “I was acquitted of being involved in drugs, how could I do that?

“I have not been involved in drugs with Gary More or anyone else.

“I have been acquitted and now I’m being pressured.”

Detective sergeant Nick Eaton earlier told the trial how Mr More was given a ‘police personal safety warning’ six weeks before the murder.

DS Eaton said Mr More signed the document but was not “interested” in it.

Mr More’s older sister Lindsey Blaney, 36, told jurors that she had “suspected” that he was involved in illegal drugs.

She stated she was asked for £5000 a few months before his death but refused.

She said: “He told me he needed to pay something earlier than he thought he had to pay it.”

It was revealed Mr More had a property in Murcia, Spain and a caravan at a holiday park in Ayrshire.

Neil Anderson’s QC Donald Findlay asked her: “How was he able to fund all that?”

Ms Blaney replied: “I knew he had a gym and I suspect he funded it through what I already said.”

Mr More’s friend and neighbour David Hughes, 41, told jurors he had previously delivered money to a man in Bothwell, South Lanarkshire, on the victim’s behalf.

The joiner added that he met the same man at the murder scene after hearing a noise outside his home.

Prosecutor Mr Ewing put to him: “What did you ask him?”

Mr Hughes replied: “Who it was that done it.”

Mr Ewing then said: “What did he say?”

Mr Hughes responded: “He could smell it…I didn’t know [what he meant] I was confused.”

Guthrie, who is serving six years for six assault and robberies as well traffic offences, told prison officers he was paying back a debt and “didn’t know the reason for driving.”

Prosecutor Mr Ewing said: “He stated that he was paid £100,000 for driving.”

Guthrie also made admissions to his then girlfriend in the month before in September 2019.

Guthrie asked his partner the day after the shooting if she knew about “that thing that happened in Airdrie.”

Mr Ewing said: “He advised her he was driving the Skoda that was involved and stated ‘I don’t do anything, I just drive’.”

A police raid on his family’s home in Glasgow’s Maryhill recovered a phone which had maps of where the Skoda was burned out.

Data from the phone also matched the known movements of the car which drove past Mr More’s home the night before the shooting.

Neil and David Anderson were acquitted by the jury of behaving in a threatening or abusive manner towards Mr More, aggravated by a connection to serious organised crime.

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