AN 'obsessed' man accused of murdering his love rival told police her new man had 'taken his life away' and a confided in a friend that he had 'nothing left', a court heard.

Mark Chilman denies murdering his ex-partner's new lover, Neil Parkinson, whose body was discovered in his burnt out car in a lay-by in Ankerdine Road, Cotheridge, near Worcester.

The 52-year-old's trial began at Worcester Crown Court yesterday following the alleged murder of the 66-year-old on December 12 last year. The prosecution say Chilman struck Mr Parkinson to the back of the head, which caused a depressed fracture to the base of his skull and would have rendered him unconscious, before staging his suicide by setting fire to him in his car.

Before the alleged murder it was said by the prosecution that Chilman of the Old Post Office, Pencombe had put a tracking device on his ex-partner's car, written love notes on a mirror in lipstick, taken her clothing and sprayed it with her perfume, cuddling it before going to sleep, and had left 'morbid items', including a noose 'to hang himself', on the farm.

In a series of interview Chilman admitted to police he still loved Juliet Adcock 'to bits'. "She was, he said, his life" said Mark Heywood QC, prosecuting the case.

"He said that Neil Parkinson had taken his life away by taking his partner and his house" said the prosecutor.

He told officers he was 'not happy' with her relationship with Neil Parkinson but 'wasn't going to do anything about it'. Chilman accepted he had never had a key to Giltedge Farm where his former partner lived.

The gate to the farm was usually unlocked when he had lived there. Mr Parkinson had provided the lock for the gate to Ms Adcock after the breakdown of her relationship with Chilman.

"He had done that so the gate could be locked when she was in on her own" said Mr Heywood. Ms Adcock did not believe that Chilman had the code for the lock which had been changed 'more than once'.

Blood matched by DNA to Mr Parkinson was found on the farm's gatepost.

In his third interview on December 14, Chilman accepted he had put a tracking device on Ms Adcock's car without her knowledge. Mr Heywood said: "He had done this because he thought she was having an affair and he needed to find out for himself. He wanted to see where she was going and whether she was telling him the truth."

The device, placed on Juliet Adcock's BMW, had been active between July 8 and August 31 last year. It was removed by police on December 15 last year.

Chilman also told police he had been to Mr Parkinson's house in Clifton-Upon-Teme 'to find his car'. Mr Heywood said the car to which he referred belonged to Ms Adcock. Chilman also denied using any other phone than his own. The court heard that Ms Adcock received a text message purporting to be from Mr Parkinson but that was from a number she did not recognise.

The message, which Ms Adock believed was from Chilman and not her partner, was delivered at 10.17pm on the night of the alleged murder and read: "Juliet. It's Neil on one of my other phones. I have got a confession to tell you. I lead a double life. I use and abuse women."

"He did say he had been beaten up in the past by two guys who had told him 'this is from Neil, stay away!' He was asked to give details of that but was a bit vague" said Mr Heywood.

In interview he was also asked about a text he had sent to Andy Underwood, telling him to say he was having a Chinese with him if he was asked and telling him: "I'm ready to go down for it. I have nothing left."

The trial continues.