Milton Keynes vicar's son, 28, who had sex with 83-year-old spinster, denies murder and attempted murder

A 28-year-old son of a vicar had sex with an 83-year-old woman and 'married' a 69-year-old gentleman scholar as part of a plot to murder them and inherit their money, a court has heard.

Thursday, 2nd May 2019, 1:17 pm
Updated Thursday, 2nd May 2019, 1:28 pm
Ann Moore

Ben Field, from Wellingborough Road, Olney, is accused of murdering retired teacher Peter Farquhar by slipping drugs and neat alcohol in his food and drinks.

The son of Olney Baptist minister the Reverend Ian Field, Ben stands in the dock alongside his brother Tom, who is 23.

tom field is charged with fraud by false representation

Ann Moore

Together with friend Martyn Smith, Ben Field is trial accused of murdering Mr Farquhar , who they had both lived with at his home in Maids Moreton, and attempting to murder 83-year-old Ann Moore-Martin, who was a neighbour lived just a couple of doors down the road.

They wanted to break down their elderly gay landlord, who Ben 'married', and then murder him so they could get their hands on his inheritance, Oxford Crown Court was told this morning.

Yesterday the jury heard how, once Mr Farquhar died in 2015, the pair moved on to spinster Miss Moore-Martin and Field entering into a "full blown sexual relationship" with her.

But Miss Moore-Martin's niece became suspicious and altered police. This led to a massive operation which involved exhuming Mr Farquhar's body almost two years after his death.

Ben Field

Today the court heard Mr Farquhar was known to all as a social drinker who drank in moderation. But he was encouraged to drink more by his young lover Field and lodger Smith, the prosecutor alleged.

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The pensioner was not aware, however, that his lodgers were likely adding bioethanol to his drink to give it a "supercharged" strength.

Mr Saxby said: "Peter Farquhar's life began to disintegrate and he believed he was losing his mind - all because Field and Smith were drugging him. Sedatives and other psychoactive drugs, including 'new psychoactive drugs'. They encouraged him to drink more alcohol... ‘have another glass’. whiskey, in particular. The one accentuating the effects of the other.

Peter Farquhar

"They allowed for it to be thought, encouraged for it to be thought that Mr Farquhar was becoming an alcoholic. After all, he was drinking a little more and his symptoms seemed so consistent with inebriation. 'Poor old thing', his friends would have thought - 'he's completely let himself go'.

"Mr Farquhar underwent various humiliations - culminating in a doctor advising that all alcohol should be removed from his house and that he should abstain from drinking for a period of time."

Mr Saxby continued: "Mr Farquhar was not an alcoholic. Nor was he suffering from dementia. Nor did he have any other form of disease of the mind. No, his symptoms were the products of drugs which, unbeknownst to him, he was being fed."

Entries in Mr Farquhar's diary recorded his distress about an incident where he lost all power in his hips and fell in the bathroom, leaving blood everywhere.

He also wrote of the "one of the most awful days of my life" where he hallucinated seeing black insects and lost his balance.

Mr Farquhar was found dead by his house cleaner on October 26 2015. Afterwards Ben Field inherited the house plus £20,000 inheritance. . Smith collected £10,000.

Tom Field, who also lives at The Manse in Olney, is alleged to have received £27,000 from Miss Moore-Martin. He, his brother and Smith had convinced her the cash was needed so Tom could buy a kidney dialysis machine so he could remain at university. He denies fraud.

Ben Field Benjamin Field denies murder, attempted murder, and conspiracy to murder. He has admitted the three counts of fraud and one count of burglary.

Martyn Smith, who is from Cornwall and met Ben field when they were buckingham University students, denies murder, attempted murder, conspiracy to murder, three counts of fraud, burglary, and possession of an article for use in fraud, namely the will of an 101-year-old woman called Elizabeth Zettl.

The trial continues.