Line of Duty's Marcus Thurwell explained – who is James Nesbitt's character?

Dusty Baxter-Wright
·2-min read
Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

Much of our Line Of Duty watching experience has been spent Googling "Who is...?" and "What has .... got to do with the storyline?" We've had to do it with Tommy Hunter, we've had to do it with Lee Banks. And now we're having to do it with Marcus Thurwell.

The character, played by James Nesbitt, cropped up in the last episode of Line Of Duty and could potentially have something to do with why Gail Vella was murdered. He might even lead us to finding out who the notorious 'H' - or 'The Fourth Man' is.

But, er, who actually is he? Here's what you need to know.

Who is Line Of Duty's Marcus Thurwell?

We most recently heard about Marcus Thurwell (played by James Nesbitt) in the fifth episode of the sixth series of Line Of Duty. He's the character who was accidentally leaked on the BBC website, and may potentially be linked to the murder of political journalist Gail.

Marcus Thurwell feels like a new name - and is definitely a new face - but he was actually first mentioned in season three. His name featured on paperwork, confirming he was the Senior Investigating Officer in charge of the Oliver Stephens-Lloyd case - the man who was sought in connection to the Sands View Boys Home scandal and eventually committed suicide.

Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

Thurwell retired from the force in 2005, though he was briefly questioned by AC-12 in 2015 over Sands View. He vanished to Spain in 2015 when former Chief Superintendent Patrick Fairbank was convicted.

In episode five of season six, we learn that Marcus was also in the police force around the time of the Lawrence Christopher case in 2003 (when a young Black man died in police custody).

The other officers on the Christopher case included Ian Buckells - who we now know has OCG links. We also know that journalist Gail Vella was looking into Racist corruption in the police before she was murdered, which could have led her to the Christopher case.

Photo credit: BBC
Photo credit: BBC

It was speculated by Superintendent Ted Hastings that Thurwell was/is working for the OCG and allegedly sabotaged the investigation into Christopher's murder in order to protect Tommy Hunter's son Darren. Could that mean he's still got OCG links and has something to do with Gail's murder?

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