The judge in the case of a Polish labourer accused of the murder of Edward Highwood has ordered a retrial after the jury could not come to a verdict.

Marcin Orlowski, of no fixed address, denies murdering Mr Highwood in Greenwich, south-east London, last July.

The Bexley Times reports that Judge John Milford QC discharged the jury last Thursday following a three-week trial, after they failed to reach a verdict.

Orlowski, 20, admits killing the pensioner by hitting him over the head with a vase but denies murder on the grounds of a lack of intent, no provocation and diminished responsibility.

He claims that Mr Highwood, 79, tried to force unwanted sexual attentions on him and he struck out in self-defence.

Mr Highwood, known as Teddy, was found dead at his Greenwich home by his housemate on July 18th. He had suffered severe head injuries.

Orlowski remains in custody. A date for the retrial will be announced.