St Mellons murder: Drug addict 'tortured' over £500

Anthony Winter Image copyright South Wales Police
Image caption Anthony Winter was father to a two-year-old girl

A drug addict was tortured in a "ferocious beating" before being stabbed to death over a £500 debt to dealers, a court has heard.

The body of Anthony Winter, 32, was found in woodland in St Mellons, Cardiff, on 22 November.

John Jr Phillips, 28, from Newport, and a man and woman both aged 17 all deny murder at Cardiff Crown Court.

Christopher James, 19, of St Mellons, has already admitted murdering Mr Winter with a knife.

Christopher Clee QC, prosecuting, said Mr Winter was lured to a flat in Newport the previous evening and "viscously assaulted and tortured" for several hours by a group.

After failing to access his bank account, Mr Winter was "stabbed and left to die", the court heard.

"Even though the fatal blow was delivered by Jones, each of these three defendants played a part in the killing and are guilty of murder," said Mr Clee.

Image caption Mr Winter's body was found near Brookfield Drive in St Mellons

The court heard Mr Phillips' girlfriend, Lauren Hutchinson saw Mr Winter being punched, stamped on and poked with scissors by the group.

Ms Hutchinson "begged" her boyfriend to stop but was threatened that the 17-year-old man would "rape and kill" her, the court heard.

She said she was ordered to clean the room and remove a rug and clothes.

Mr Winter was taken by taxi to St Mellons at about 06:15.

The court heard the driver was told Mr Winter had learning difficulties and he begged "please drive, please drive" as he got out.

"Anthony Winter appears to have known what was going to happen to him," said Mr Clee.

"They took [him] into the woods. He was stabbed by Jones in his thigh, passing through an artery and left to die."

He was found by a passer by but could not be saved.

Mr Phillips, who had remained in Newport, was heard to call Jones "my killer" during several phone conversations over the following hours, the court heard.

The trial continues.

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