Great Britain

The Sun doubles reward to £40,000 for information on pool party death Stuart Lubbock at Michael Barrymore’s house

THE Sun’s decision to double the reward for information on Michael Barrymore’s pool party death to £40,000 will “get to the truth”, the victim’s dad said tonight.

Police probing a potential “cover-up” insist Stuart Lubbock, 31, was raped and murdered at the TV star’s mansion 19 years ago.

We are joining forces with Terry Lubbock, 75, and Crimestoppers.

After we pledged to match the £20,000 Crimestoppers reward, Terry said: “This money will get to the truth. We are taking another step nearer to it.

"I want to thank The Sun. This is wonderful news.”

Essex cops believe Barrymore and his seven guests could be key witnesses.

PARTY DEATH PROBE

Today, the eight were silent — including Barrymore, who was arrested in 2007 but never charged.

His ex-boyfriend Jonathan Kenney, who was also arrested but never charged, refused to speak when approached by The Sun.

The family of Justin Merritt, nicked but freed without charge too, refused to reveal where the ex-binman was living.

His sister Kylie, also at the party, slammed the door on us.

Star's C4 'parasite' dig

MICHAEL Barrymore refused to comment on the new pool death probe today — but “liked” an online comment dubbing Channel 4 “parasites”.

A two-hour documentary on Stuart Lubbock’s 2001 death at Barrymore’s mansion is to be screened on Thursday night.

Barrymore, 67, who was spotted near the Dancing on Ice studios, liked a comment from Danny Bear, brother of reality star Stephen.

He wrote: “Parasites from Channel 4 still dragging up an incident many many years ago that Michael was NOT GUILTY of.

“I’m disgusted a man who entertained many generations including myself and all the Bears continues to make two steps forward and one step back.”

Ex-Strike It Lucky host Barrymore also replied: “Thank you very much x” to a female fan who called him “a legend”.

Barrymore was seen with a friend walking around Bovingdon Studios in Hertfordshire.

He had pulled out of Dancing On Ice after breaking his wrist.

Stuart Lubbock’s dad Terry, 75, claimed the injury was faked to spare the embarrassment of being on the show while the documentary aired.

Guest Kelly Conyard also refused to speak.

The rest, James Futers, Simon Shaw and Clare Jones, all continued to lie low.

Barrymore, 67, and the others have always denied involvement, saying drunk and high Stuart drowned accidentally at the ex-Strike It Lucky host’s Essex home.

The investigation has gathered momentum ahead of Thursday’s Channel 4 documentary Barrymore: The Body in the Pool.

Asked why Essex Police offered the reward, Det Chief Insp Stephen Jennings said: “Loyalties can change.”

Lord Ashcroft, founder and chair of the charity Crimestoppers, said: “We are delighted The Sun is supporting Crimestoppers in our attempts to get justice for Terry Lubbock’s son.

"We hope anyone with information will contact us. We guarantee you stay 100 per cent anonymous.”

Police state Barrymore and his seven pool party guests are all suspects in the rape and murder of Stuart Lubbock

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