A MAN was kidnapped and held at knifepoint in a car before being forced to buy a £5,000 ring for a London drug dealer during a five-hour ordeal, a court has heard.

Corrie Jane Falconer-Smith stands accused of the kidnap and robbery of the victim, along with co-defendants Reece Harding and David Emmanuel Hill, who have recently entered guilty pleas and will be sentenced at a later hearing.

During the trial of FalconerSmith held at Winchester Crown Court this week, a jury heard how the man had fallen prey to the defendants following a night out in Andover.

The 36-year-old accepts her role as the driver during the incident but has entered a not guilty plea with a defence of duress on the basis that she drove to a bus stop with the sole intention of scoring drugs and that her son’s safety was threatened if she did not comply with her co-defendants’ demands.

Opening the case for the prosecution, Andrew Houston told the court that the victim came to the attention of Harding, a London drug dealer, and Hill after he was seen driving his BMW.

Mr Houston said: “[The victim] is a young man who came into a bit of money in the earlier part of this year when one of his family members died and he got an inheritance. He did spend some money on a BMW car and some shoes.

“When he went out in Andover with friends, that car drew some attention from Reece Harding and David Hill. In their mindset, as [the victim] was driving a nice car and wearing smart shoes they thought he must be a drug dealer.”

The court then heard that the victim’s ordeal began at a bus stop in Artists Way at around 4am on 20 May, when he was approached by Hill, who was carrying a knife, and Harding with a cut-throat razor asking for “packets” (cocaine).

Mr Houston added: “What followed for [the victim], he was threatened with a knife and bundled into a car and robbed. He was taken on a journey that took him from Andover to Winchester. In Winchester he was made to go into a jewellers and buy a £5,000 ring which he came to hand over to Mr Harding.

“The car was that of the defendant. “The car was hers, the driver was she and she it was who drove [the victim] around Andover to Winchester and back.”

The jury was told it was Falconer-Smith’s black Renault Clio which came to the bus stop and Harding and Hill forced the victim into the car, where he was held at knifepoint and also robbed of his wallet, keys and phone, on which they accessed his bank account.

Over the course of the next few hours, it is alleged that Falconer-Smith, of St Anns Close, increased the withdrawal limit on his bank account from £200 to £500.

The victim was then driven to a Tesco Express in Andover where Hill withdrew £500 before being dropped off near his home.

During the five-hour ordeal the victim was driven out to Sparsholt and there was a later stop at a Martin’s shop on Stoney Lane in Winchester before he was taken into the city to buy the £5,000 ring from Offord & Sons jewellers.

The jury was shown CCTV footage of the victim going into the shop and attempting to buy the ring but the transaction was declined.

He was then seen going into Barclays bank to arrange for the payment to go through and back to the jewellers to buy the ring.

Harding could be seen outside throughout and the ring was handed straight to him after purchase.

The defendant’s car was then seen coming to collect them and he was taken back to Andover with Harding offering him a large quantity of cocaine as compensation for the ordeal.

In a police interview Falconer-Smith said she had only used Harding as her drug dealer occasionally because he was a “psycho” and she denied knowing Hill.

During the investigation, however, officers found evidence she had travelled back to London with Harding on at least two occasions and made a large number of calls to him between February and May.

There were also messages between her and Hill, not related, to the sale and purchase of cement and beds, which she later told police was how she knew him.

Harding, 25, of Trinity Road, Wandsworth, has recently changed his plea to guilty to charges of kidnap, robbery, being concerned in the supply of class A drugs, possession of heroin and possession of a bladed article. Hill, 44, of Turner Court, Andover, has also recently pleaded guilty to kidnap and robbery.

The trial continues.