A MAN has been found guilty of murdering 49-year-old Simon Shotton.

Benjamin Atkins was found guilty of murder by a majority jury verdict at Winchester Crown Court.

His co-defendant, Debbie Pereira, was found not guilty of murder.

Pereira was found guilty of perverting the course of justice by a unanimous jury verdict.

Atkins nodded as the verdict was read out, while Pereira began to cry.

Mr Shotton's severed remains were found dumped in the Boscombe area last summer.

Atkins, 49, and Pereira, 39, were arrested at their Aylesbury Road flat after being caught selling Mr Shotton’s phone to Cash Creators in Boscombe.

They have been facing trial for murder at Winchester Crown Court since April 10.

Prior to the trial, Atkins admitted to charges of perverting the course of justice, and preventing the burial of a corpse but denied murder.

Pereira also denied murder, as well as a charge of preventing the burial of a corpse and perverting the course of justice.

However, mid-way through the trial, Pereira changed her plea to guilty for preventing the burial of a corpse.

Members of the jury were sent to begin their deliberations at 10.54am on Wednesday, May 15.

After deliberating for 20 hours and 52 minutes, they returned their verdicts on Wednesday morning.

They returned verdicts on Wednesday, May 22.