A “KIND and helpful” collector was stabbed to death in his own home after disturbing a burglar trying take his limited edition Beatrix Potter 50ps who then attempted to burn down his flat, a court heard.

Gordon McGhee, 52, was found dead in his flat in Forest Road, Colchester, in August having suffered several stab wounds.

Danny Bostock – who knew Mr McGhee and shared his hobby of collecting coins – was later arrested.

Opening the trial at Ipswich Crown Court, Andrew Jackson, prosecuting, described the attack as “determined and brutal” and said Bostock wanted the coin collection having swapped his own Beatrix Potter coins with other people in the area in the hours before the alleged murder.

READ MORE: Man denies murder in Greenstead

He said: “It was in the early hours of Wednesday, August 22 last year that this defendant Danny Bostock went to the home of a 52-year-old man Gordon McGhee.

“He went there to burgle Mr McGhee’s home.

“He was disturbed during the course of the burglary by Mr McGhee and so he murdered Mr McGhee by stabbing him several times.

“He stabbed Mr McGhee 14 times to his face, neck and upper body.

“Two of the stab wounds penetrated deep into his chest and lungs causing massive bleeding.

“These injuries were catastrophic and killed Mr McGhee.

“He left Mr McGhee lying his own blood in his own home and tried to destroy the flat by fire.

“He wanted to destroy Mr McGhee’s body and all traces of what he had done.

“He was arrested later and when questioned, Danny Bostock denied any involvement in it.”

The vast majority of Mr McGhee’s prize coin collection were taken from his flat and have never been recovered while a knife used in the attack is also still missing.

Mr Jackson said Bostock, 33, wanted to cause an explosion to destroy Mr McGhee’s body.

He said: “In the kitchen he turned on the gas on the oven and just let it flow freely.

“He then took a towel and lit it leaving it lying on the floor in the hallway and did it immediately before he left.

“He did that to try and cause a gas explosion.”

READ MORE: Tributes paid to Gordon McGhee

Mr Jackson said Bostock, of Berberis Walk, Colchester, had been seen on CCTV around the Greenstead estate cycling away from the area wearing a pink Diesel t-shirt and a distinctive pair of brown Lonsdale trainers.

He added forensic experts had linked the trainers to blood which had been left in the flat which Bostock had then thrown away, as well as his DNA being on the cloth which had been lit.

Mr McGhee’s blood was also found on the left pedal of Bostock’s GT Aggressor mountain bike.

Bostock denies murder and attempted arson.

The trial, which is expected to last three weeks, continues.