The widow of a infamous gangster has said she given up hope that police will catch his killer.

John "Goldfinger" Palmer was shot dead by henchman in 2015 in South Weald and no-one has been arrested for his murder.

Originally it was thought he had died from a heart attack, until the bullet hole was later found during a post mortem.

Palmer melted down bullion from the audacious 1983 Brink's Mat gold heist and police have admitted that tens of thousands of people wanted him dead.

His widow Marnie Palmer has spoken out, criticising the police investigation,

She told The Telegraph: "There's more chance of Lord Lucan showing up than of police finding my John's assassin.

"I have given up on hope that the case will be solved. So much of what we have been told by Essex Police has been hogwash.”

"For the first time in his life, my husband had relaxed about all those threats against him. For years he had been so paranoid about assassination attempts. I was sleepless at times. But security had been scaled down dramatically at his homes over the last four years of life. His Rottweilers, always by his side, were all the security he needed.

"The scene of the murder was simply too convenient. John was found in the only spot where he had not installed CCTV. And where were his dogs? It was virtually unheard of for him to keep his Rottweilers inside.

"The police were watching his every move in the months before he died. They really should have known more about his activities, his associates and his potential enemies, yet officers are completely lost at sea.”

Despite Palmer admitting to melting down gold bars from the robbery in his garden, he was acquitted during the trial in 1987 after claiming that he wasn't aware they were stolen

Mrs Palmer also said she "feels terrible" who lost their money in the various scams that Palmer ran, but claimed the situation spiralled beyond his control.

An Essex Police spokesperson said: “We are aware of a number of claims made in a forthcoming publication about our investigation into the murder of John Palmer in Brentwood in June 2015.

“Earlier this month we wrote to the History Press, the publishers of this book, to express concerns about a number of factual inaccuracies contained in the book. We have yet to receive a response to our letter and it is disappointing, given these matters, that they have been replicated in the national media.

“Mr Palmer was not under surveillance by Essex Police at the time of his death.

“We remain committed to solving this murder, relentlessly pursuing those behind it and bringing John’s killer to justice. We continue to explore a number of lines of inquiry.

“We would remind people that a £100,000 reward is behind offered by the Palmer family via Crimestoppers for information leading to arrest and conviction in this case. Anyone with information can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or Essex Police on 101.”

:: Goldfinger and Me: Bullets, Bullion and Betrayal, by Marnie Palmer and Tom Morgan, is published on August 3, with The History Press. £9.99 in paperback. Also available on Kindle Edition.