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&#39Adviser stole £279k and then murdered pensioner&#39

Worcester financial adviser Peter Crittenden is standing trial on charges of murdering pensioner Joan Beddeson after stealing £279,00 from her.

Crittenden, 64, who worked for Young Ridgeway & Associates, is on trial at Chester Crown Court. He denies the charges.

He was appointed financial adviser to Beddeson, 71, after she saw a newspaper ad. Crittenden is alleged to have seduced Beddeson and then persuaded her to sell her investments, transferring the cash into his bank account as well as making him the sole beneficiary of her £500,000 will.

However, Beddeson is believed to have had a change of heart and asked for her money back, ending the relationship.

It is alleged that Crittenden drove through the night to Beddeson&#39s home in Macclesfield, Cheshire and smothered her with a pillow. Crittenden was described in court as “rotten to the core” by prosecutor Lord Carlile of Berriew, QC.

Crittenden claims that on the night that Beddeson was murdered, he had been home all night with his wife in Worcester.

However, his car was photographed heading north on the M5 around midnight and again on the M6 southbound just before 4am.

The trial continues.

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