1. ITV Report

Court hears murdered farmer had nothing worth stealing

Llywelyn Thomas, 76, was found dead in his converted chapel in Chittering in December 2012 Photo: Cambridgeshire Police

A widowed farmer from Cambridgeshire battered to death in his own home by two burglars had "nothing worth stealing", a court has heard.

Llywelyn Thomas, 76, was found dead in his converted chapel in Ely Road, on the outskirts of Chittering, on December 18. Prosecutors claim that the previous night two men raided the property, ransacking it, possibly tying him up then punching and stamping on the helpless pensioner.

His son, Richard Thomas, from London, told Cambridge Crown Court he had left his father watching television with a blanket on his lap the previous night.

In a statement read to jurors, he said: "There was almost nothing in terms of valuable items in the house. There was no valuable jewellery, there may have been some money but I very much doubt it."

Llywelyn Thomas, 76, was found dead in his converted chapel in Chittering in December 2012. Credit: ITV Anglia

Frankie Parker, 26, of Nene Road, Ely, and Gary Smith, 21, of no fixed address, both deny murder. Smith denies robbery while Parker admits this charge.

Smith's father John Smith, 67, of Wold Gate, Bridlington, East Yorkshire, is also standing trial after pleading not guilty to assisting an offender. He is accused of acting as a getaway driver.

He has admitted another charge of assisting an offender by providing a false alibi.

The court was shown video footage of Llywelyn Thomas lying dead on the landing of the house. The bedroom had been ransacked and drawers downstairs had been pulled out and tipped over.

After discovering his father had been killed, Richard Thomas discovered three watches and a wallet were missing and it was later discovered that some ornamental eggs had also been taken.

Cambridge Crown Court heard Llywelyn Thomas had nothing worth stealing. Credit: Cambridgeshire Police

A V-reg Rover, which was not roadworthy and could not go above 20mph, was allegedly stolen and used as a getaway car.

Motorists told police they had become frustrated after getting stuck behind the car as it made a slow-moving escape.

Prosecutors allege that the pair drove to the home of Parker's brother Martin in the nearby village of Milton to change out of their clothes.

Martin Parker said: "They took their clothes off and put them in black bags - I thought they had done a normal burglary and didn't see any blood."

The pair called John Smith, who collected them in his car, the jury heard.

Llywelyn Thomas, originally from South Wales, had lived alone since the death of his wife 10 years earlier.

Two men are on trial at Cambridge Crown Court for the murder of pensioner Llywelyn Thomas Credit: ITV Anglia

On the night of his death, Edith Jenkins, a farm owner from Bryn, Wales, had telephoned him.

They had been friends since the 1990s when he sold his businesses in Port Talbot. He regularly visited Wales and had just returned from a visit earlier that week.

"I wanted to make sure he had got home okay," she said.

"I waited until the end of Strictly Come Dancing on the television and we chatted, it was a normal conversation. He gave no indication of any worries or concerns."

The case continues.

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