London - Whitney Houston was murdered over a £1-million (around R13,6-million) drugs debt, a Hollywood private investigator has claimed.
Paul Huebl suggests two thugs were sent to the hotel where she died to settle the debt and he has the CCTV footage to prove it.
He said marks found on the singer’s body could be defensive wounds, indicating that she had tried to fight off attackers.
In an interview published in the US on Thursday, Huebl said: ‘I have evidence that points to Whitney being a victim of high-powered drug dealers who sent thugs to collect a huge debt she owed for drugs.’
He has handed over a dossier of information to the FBI in the hope that it will open a criminal investigation into Houston’s death at the age of 48.
Houston was found drowned in her bath at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles in February.
She had been due to give a performance at a pre-Grammy music awards party thrown by the man who discovered her, Sony Music boss Clive Davis. Toxicology reports revealed she had accidentally drowned due to the effects of chronic cocaine use and heart disease. Marijuana and prescription drugs were found in the singer’s system but were not considered factors in her death.
The coroner ruled that no foul play was involved, a verdict the private investigator claims was wrong.
Huebl, a former Chicago police officer, said he conducted the investigation after being hired by a client who did not believe the official reports on Houston’s death. He would not reveal the name of his client.
He claims two unknown men managed to integrate themselves into Miss Houston’s entourage while she was staying at the Beverly Hilton. He says that he has obtained CCTV footage which shows the pair repeatedly coming and going from the hotel.
According to Huebl, Houston received a cocaine delivery the day before her death.
Then, on February 11, she was left alone in her hotel room for 45 minutes – when Huebl claims one or both of the killers slipped into her room.
He added: ‘Whitney’s body shows the classic defence wounds that would have occurred while she was battling for her life.’
But he conceded that the marks on her hands and fingernails were only ‘suspected’ defence wounds.
Huebl says he has evidence that the superstar’s hotel room was ransacked, which also suggests there was a violent struggle.
He believes Beverly Hills police did not fully investigate the singer’s death because they did not want to bring the negative attention to the exclusive area of Los Angeles or to the hotel.
The FBI and Beverly Hills police did not respond to requests for comment. - Daily Mail