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Last Updated: Tuesday, 4 July 2006, 10:45 GMT 11:45 UK
Woods murder case to be reviewed
Courtney Davies
Mr Davies' body was found in woodland
An investigation into the murder of a man with a record for violent crime who was found stabbed and burnt in Gloucestershire is to be reviewed.

The body of Courtney Davies, 53, from Rumney, Cardiff, was found in woodland in the Forest of Dean in December 2004.

In April, murder charges against Malcolm Martin, 33, from Fairwater in Cardiff, were dropped.

Avon and Somerset Police will now carry out a review of how Gloucestershire Constabulary handled the inquiry.

Mr Davies' body was found just off the A4136 Cinderford to Monmouth road on 20 December, 2004, by a passer-by.

He had been stabbed more than 70 times and his body was badly burnt.

Not guilty

Mr Martin was charged with murder in January 2005 and was due to stand trial this month.

However, the Crown Prosecution Service said charges against him were dropped at an administrative hearing in April after no evidence was offered and a not guilty verdict was recorded.

A Gloucestershire Crown Prosecution Service spokesman said: "Following advice from leading counsel that there was no longer a realistic prospect of a conviction, the Crown Prosecution Service reviewed the case and a decision was made to offer no evidence.

"However, the police investigation into the death of Mr Davies remains ongoing and officers are now pursuing new lines of inquiry.

"The matter has been voluntarily referred to Avon and Somerset Constabulary who are conducting a review into the initial investigation carried out by Gloucestershire police."

Mr Davies was jailed for 15 years in 1986 for a violent robbery at the home of a businessman in south Wales, and later convicted of a second armed robbery.

Deaf man's murder charge dropped
30 Jun 06 |  Gloucestershire
Man killed in 'frenzied attack'
23 Dec 04 |  Gloucestershire

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