The murder of a priest and the possible involvement of a fellow priest seems an unlikely scenario – but it is one that surfaced in Bradford in 1953. The murdered priest was Father Henryk Borynski, who vanished on Monday, July 13th.

Father Borynski had recently been appointed chaplain to the 1,500-strong Polish community in Bradford. He was anti-Communist and this was the height of the Cold War, when there were people who would stop at nothing to settle scores with their political enemies. He had been sent to replace a colleague, Canon Martynellis – but Martynellis refused to move.

Chief Superintendent Robert Taylor, of West Yorkshire Police, believed that Canon Martynellis was used by Communist agents among Bradford’s East European community to set a trap for Father Borynski – and that professional jealousy drove him to co-operate. The superintendent added: “I believe Canon Martynellis was told to co-operate if he wanted to keep his old job and he didn’t realise what he was getting into until it was too late.”

A month after Father Borynski’s disappearance Canon Martynellis was found collapsed at his home. He claimed to have been visited by two mysterious men who told him, “Keep quiet, priest.” He died of a heart attack two years later. No trace of Father Borynski has ever been found.