Gary Hampson 'murdered by business partner'

Gary Hampson Gary Hampson failed to turn up for a family appointment in January 2011

A man has gone on trial accused of murdering his business partner, whose body has never been found.

Gary Hampson, 42, of Portslade, east Sussex, was reported missing after he failed to turn up for a family appointment in January 2011.

Daniel Alexander, 61, of no fixed address, denies murder and conspiracy to pervert the course of justice.

Lewes Crown Court heard the garage the pair ran in Brighton was a front for a drug dealing operation.

Police found Mr Hampson's blood at the premises, jurors heard.

'Undoubtedly supplied drugs'

Philip Bennetts, prosecuting, said: "There was little work done on cars at the garage.

"Mr Hampson undoubtedly supplied drugs and at the time of his death was in debt."

During the first day of the trial on Wednesday, jurors were also told that Mr Alexander anonymously tipped off Sussex Police officers that Mr Hampson had drugs in his flat.

Sussex Police began a murder inquiry after his blood was found at Kops Cars garage.

Three other people have also gone on trial in connection with Mr Hampson's death.

Alan Topping, 48, of no fixed address, Roy Bartup, 57, of Natal Road, Brighton, and Linda Rosenberg, 67, of Montpellier Road, Brighton, all face charges of perverting the course of justice.

The trial is expected to last several weeks.

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