A MARRIED father-of-two's intense jealousy of his teenage lover's blossoming relationship with his elder brother led to murder, a court heard today.

Unemployed David Hodgson, 47, had been seeing shop worker Jenny Nicholl, 19, since she was young schoolgirl.

He was possessively jealous and would kick off if he saw the teenager talking to other men.

Jenny left her home in Richmond, North Yorkshire on June 30, 2005 and has never been seen alive since. Her body has never found.

Hodgson, a former fence erector, went on trial today at Teesside Crown Court accused of the teenagers murder.

Prosecutor James Goss QC said: "The prosecution case is that the defendant David Hodgson murdered Jenny Nicholl the night she disappeared and disposed of her body somewhere in the neighbouring countryside with the intention that it should never be found.

"So this is the case where there is no body. Jenny simply disappeared. Nor is there any crime scene, we cannot point to a location and say, for sure, this is where Jenny was killed.

"David Hodgson has always denied that he has killed her. Indeed he has maintained that he has had no contact with her since she disappeared.

"You will hear how his accounts of various highly significant matters and events have changed.

"He has told many lies and one important issue upon which you will want to focus is why?

Did he lie to conceal his guilt of being responsible for Jennys death or was he lying for some other reason?"

The court was told that Jenny began a relationship with Hodgson when she was 14.

They became friends because she went to school with his two daughters, Frances, now 24 and Rebecca, now 21.

"The nature and extent of this relationship, which continued until the day she disappeared, lies at the very heart of this case," Mr Goss told the jury of six men and six women.

"The defendant, until after Jenny had disappeared, denied there was anything between them.

"Indeed in his witness statement made to the police on July 8, 2005 he claimed: 'I have never had a crush on her or had any kind of relationship with her.'

"In fact, as he was to admit in later interviews, they did have a relationship that included sexual intercourse. He claims they only had sex five times, giving varying accounts to the places and occasions, each one, he claimed, after she was 16.

"Scientific evidence will show that Jenny and Hodgson had sex in two hides, which the defendant and his older brother, Robert, had built in woodland on the outskirts of Richmond," Mr Goss said.

Hodgson's accounts of their relationship varied, the QC told the jury.

"He once told police that he loved her but on another occasion said they were only friends and 'shagged because owt was better than nowt' and claimed that Jenny would open her legs for anyone."

Mr Goss told the jury: "Jenny told a friend about her ongoing affair with a married man since she was 15 and how he had kicked off when he had seen her with another boyfriend, from whom she then split up.

"This evidence of possessive jealously has relevance to the last weeks of Jennys life in Richmond.

"In the weeks before her disappearance, Jenny became friends with Robert Hodgson - although he was unaware of brother's long-standing relationship with the teenager."

Jenny worked in the local Co-Op store in Richmond stacking shelves and was well known on the pub scene in the town because she played guitar in a band.

Friends described her as secretive, rarely confiding in friends or family.

The teenager was last seen leaving her home in Bolton Avenue, which she shared with her parents, at about 6pm on June 30, 2005.

She told her mother Ann that she would be staying out overnight - something that was not unusual - and took a rucksack with her.

That afternoon Hodgson also left his family home and said he was going camping. He did not return home until the following morning.

On the morning of July 4, Mrs Nicholl reported her daughter to the police as missing. Later that day she found Jenny's white Rover 214i car abandoned in a local pub car park.

North Yorkshire Police launched a major nationwide missing person inquiry and on July 9 and 14 - less than two weeks after Jenny vanished - text messages were sent to her father, Brian, a retired Army major, and two friends.

The first message was sent from her mobile phone to Jennifer Wilson and minutes later to another friend Nicola Gosnold. Scientific analysis has shown that these messages were sent from the Brampton area of Cumbria.

Five days later, Jenny's father received two text messages, which have been shown to have been sent from Jedburgh, in the Scottish Borders.

Mr Goss explained that the messages were an attempt to show that Jenny was still alive and had in fact left home.

The prosecution case is that these messages were sent by the person who knew Jenny was dead, for he had killed her, intending that they would provide an explanation for her sudden and unexplained disappearance, he said.

Hodgson was first interviewed shortly after Jenny went missing and in due course he became a suspect in the eventual murder investigation, which was launched the following October.

Mr Goss said that Hodgson had hired cars on the days the text messages were sent and could not account for all of his movements or the mileage travelled in the car.

"So we say that you are inevitably led to the conclusion that he travelled to Cumbria and Jedburgh on those days to send the text messages on Jennys phone, which as you know has not been activated since those messages was sent and has not been found."

Unemployed Hodgson, 47, of Olav Road, Richmond, denies murder.