A Largs man's bid to be tried on a reduced charge over the alleged horrific torture and murder of a woman in West Kilbride has been rejected by the Crown.

Paul Smith, 46, offered a plea of guilty to assaulting missing financial adviser Lynda Spence, 28, detaining her against her will, lopping off her toes and the tip of a finger and a thumb, and burning her with cigarettes and an iron.

However, this was rejected by the prosecution at Glasgow's High Court last Thursday, when Smith appeared alongside his three co-accused, David Parker, 37, of West Kilbride, Philip Wade, 41, and Colin Coats, 41, who all deny kidnap and murder.

Full story in the Largs & Millport Weekly News of July 4.