22/11/2011 11:21 GMT

Police Widen Search For Body Of Murder Victim Kate Prout

Police have widened the search for the body of a woman murdered by her wealthy husband.

They have been digging on millionaire Adrian Prout's former farm at Redmarley, Gloucestershire, for the remains of his wife Kate.

Last week Prout, 49, led officers to an area of 250 square metres on Redhill Farm where he said he had buried the 55-year-old former teacher. The businessman had always denied murdering his wife but dramatically confessed in prison.

The excavation work, which started on Monday, is taking place in dense woodland on the 276-acre farm and police have cordoned off the area and nearby paths and bridleways.

Gloucestershire Constabulary, who have been using specialist radar equipment, said that "nothing of significance" has been found.

Det Supt Simon Atkinson, who is overseeing the search, said: "Adrian Prout indicated to us that a plot of land measuring approximately 250 square metres was where he had buried Mrs Prout.

"We have subjected part of that area to ground-penetrating radar testing and dug some of the ground with the assistance of a forensic archaeologist, however nothing has yet been found. We are widening the search area, working methodically outwards. This is a delicate and painstaking process.

"We are seeking advice from body deposition experts and the National Policing Improvement Agency in order to further the process. This search could, however, take some time and our thoughts are always with Kate Prout's family, who we are keeping constantly updated."

Prout was jailed for life at Bristol Crown Court last year and told to serve a minimum of 18 years after being found guilty of murder.

He had denied killing his wife, maintaining that she had disappeared in November 2007. In a dramatic twist last week, he confessed to killing her and burying her body in woodland on their £1.2 million farm, after failing a lie detector test.