Voice notes of Gavin Plumb's 'plans to kidnap Holly Willoughby' played in court

Jurors have been played voice notes of a security guard's alleged plans to kidnap, rape and murder television presenter Holly Willoughby.

Gavin Plumb, 37, allegedly bought a "restraint kit" online and sent a video - which was also shown in court - of the items, including hand and ankle shackles, a ball gag, rope, metal cable ties and handcuffs, to a potential accomplice.

Prosecutors say he had an "obsession" with the former This Morning host, 43, and planned to kidnap, repeatedly rape and murder her.

In voice notes sent to a potential accomplice called Marc, Plumb can be heard talking about his alleged plans to attack Willoughby in her own home, using chloroform to subdue her and her husband, the television producer Dan Baldwin, 49.

'Original target'

"Plan of action - basically we're going to hit it at night, less traffic on the road etc, chloroform both of them, that way they can be easily restrained, pick out outfits we like then obviously take her and the outfits with us and then we're gone," he says.

Two bottles of chloroform were later found at his home in Harlow, Essex, the court has heard.

In another audio clip, Plumb is heard saying he wanted to "make a video saying she came with us under her own free will" and was "fully consenting in everything we do to her".

Plumb was arrested on 4 October last year after he outlined his alleged plans to an undercover US police officer, based in Minnesota, who alerted authorities in the UK, the jury has been told.

The court heard he told the officer, who was using the identity David Nelson, he had been planning to kidnap Willoughby "for about two and a half years" and would "slit her throat".

On the third day of his trial, the jury was shown more material from a "sequence of events", including hundreds of communications he had with others online, as he tried to assemble a "crew" to help him attack Willoughby and other celebrities.

In more voice notes, Plumb is heard saying she was the "original target" but he and others had about "15 cells" they were "looking at filling".

Talking about Willoughby and another potential target, he adds: "We could do both at the same time - meet up, swap vehicles, get both in the same vehicle, take them to their new location basically."

ITV studio tour

In May 2022, Plumb discussed booking a tour of ITV's studios, telling Marc, who is believed to have been based in Ireland: "I'm calling the studio tours tomorrow to see if they're still available and if you meet presenters."

But Essex Police Detective Constable Will Belsham told the jury there was no evidence to show he ever followed through with the plan.

Plumb later suggested he would use his security training to get a job with Willoughby, saying: "I have passed my SIA [Security Industry Authority] licence so might try to use it to become her security guard."

Abandoned stud farm

In other messages, Plumb talked about buying realistic-looking air weapons "from pistols to sniper rifles" to carry out a "home raid" to attack her, as well as targeting other celebrities.

He also described an abandoned stud farm in the country where he could "keep" Willoughby, and, in a chat with another man, said the things he would do to her "would put me (sic) death row".

Plumb denies charges of soliciting murder, incitement to kidnap and incitement to rape between December 2021 and October last year.

The court has heard he is expected to claim it was all a fantasy.

Earlier in the trial, the jury was told Plumb has previous convictions for trying to abduct two women on trains and for using a knife to falsely imprison two 16-year-old girls - including one whose hands he tied behind her back.

Willoughby, who is not attending the trial and is not a witness, has waived her automatic right to anonymity, to which all alleged victims of sexual offences or related charges are entitled.

She announced in October last year that she was stepping down from This Morning after 14 years on the ITV show, but has since hosted Dancing On Ice 2024, and is also due to present a Netflix show.

The trial continues on Thursday when the undercover officer is due to give evidence by video-link from the US.