A “cruel, calculating” church warden has been found guilty of murdering a university lecturer but has been acquitted along with a magician of plotting to kill a retired headteacher.
Benjamin Field, 28, was convicted of killing Peter Farquhar, 69, and trying to maker his death look like an accident or suicide.
His co-defendant Martyn Smith, a 32-year old magician, was acquitted at Oxford Crown Court.
After 77 hours deliberations, Field and Smith were both cleared of a charge of conspiracy to murder Ann-Moore Smith, 83, and Field was also acquitted of her attempted murder.
The pair were accused of murdering Farquhar in the village of Maids Moreton who died in May 2017 of natural causes.
Field’s brother Tom, 24, a university graduate, was cleared of a single charge of fraud.
Mr Justice Sweeney adjourned sentencing until a pre-sentencing psychiatric report has been carried out.