London

Woman 'set man on fire in Catford kitchen'

A woman set a man on fire and then tried to withdraw money from his account, the Old Bailey has heard.

Frank Hancock, 63, died five days after an accelerant was poured over him and he was set alight in the kitchen of his flat in Catford, south London.

Patricia Malcolm, 53, of Catford, denies murder and perverting justice on 4 February 2010.

She admits theft and three charges of attempting to withdraw money from Mr Hancock's Post Office account.

David Fisher QC, prosecuting, said Mr Hancock was attacked at his basement flat in Pattenden Road, Catford, after Ms Malcolm went to see him.

As Mr Hancock lay dying in hospital, Ms Malcolm was released on bail but tried to break into her former home with a fire extinguisher, the court heard.

Police later found Mr Hancock's Post Office card in the room, Mr Fisher said.

"The two of them were alone for some time in that flat," he said.

"In circumstances that may never be clear, some type of inflammable liquid was poured on him whilst he was in the kitchen and he was set alight.

"That caused him to suffer from severe burns and to inhale smoke and fumes and he died."

The trial continues.

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