TV first as killer is jailed on camera
It was the first time in the UK that TV news cameras have been allowed to film a sentencing in a criminal court for broadcast on the same day.
Suzanne Pilley, 38, disappeared nearly two years ago after making her usual journey to work in Edinburgh city centre.
The book-keeper, described as a devoted daughter and an exemplary colleague, never arrived at her desk, having been killed at her workplace that morning, on May 4, 2010, by colleague David Gilroy.
The 49-year-old – said by prosecutors to be a “deceitful and controlling” individual – returned to the High Court in Edinburgh yesterday where he was jailed for life and told he must spend a minimum of 18 years behind bars.
Following an application by broadcaster STV, the camera recorded judge Lord Bracadale as he told Gilroy his fate.
Driven by jealousy, the killer took her body to a secret grave, believed to be in remote Argyll.
Married Gilroy, who has protested his innocence since the day Ms Pilley vanished, was convicted of murder by a jury following a four-week trial.
Cameras also played a key role in his conviction after CCTV was used to build up a picture of her last moments along with over 1,100 witness statements.
They showed Ms Pilley had made her usual bus journey from her Whitson Road flat to work at Infrastructure Managers Limited (IML) in the city but then vanished.
Gilroy, the then regional operations manager at IML from Edinburgh, was incriminated by overwhelming circumstantial evidence which showed she disappeared after meeting him in the company basement.