A MAN was “stripped down to nothing” after being doused in petrol and set on fire, a court heard.

The man was set on fire twice in Southchurch Avenue on October 30 last year and the trial of four people charged with attempted murder entered its second day yesterday.

Jane Reilly, 52, of Trowbridge Road, Harold Hill, Alan Archer, 32, of Fairmead Avenue, Westcliff, Paul Bruns, 52, of York Road, Southend, and Ben Ince, 40, of no fixed address, all deny attempted murder.

All admit being present at the scene when the attack happened, with Archer also admitting causing grievous bodily harm.

John Caudle, prosecuting at Basildon Crown Court, played the jury a recording of the 999 call made by the victim’s girlfriend at the time after he had come back into his house with severe burns.

The majority of his clothes had also been burnt off.

The woman said: “I was lying in my bed and a phone call came through that said - my fella is Polish - and they said meet me outside.

“He went outside, they stripped him down to nothing, it’s really, really bad.

“I knew the people, he has been working for free at a pie and mash shop in town.

“They have set him alight.”

The woman continued the call in a distressed manner, eventually asking the operator’s questions about the man’s injuries.

She also claimed to the operator that the man had been “working for free” in a shop run by some of the defendants.

The court previously heard that the victim had pawned a watch belonging to Reilly in order to buy alcohol from an off-licence in Southend, which was bought back by Reilly.

The woman continued: “They set him alight, f****** hell. He’s burnt, yes.

“They f****** burnt him, I can’t believe they burnt him.

“He worked for free in their shop.

“I can smell burning in there.

“I am not calling the police for nothing, this is really bad.

“He came back totally naked and set on fire.

“I can’t believe what’s happened, I can’t believe them people.

“They were bad mouthing him earlier in the day. This is bad.”

Mr Caudle previously told the jury that the man’s injuries were “horrendous” and that he was not discharged from hospital until December 18 last year.

CCTV of the attack, and the aftermath where the victim staggered back home to his girlfriend, was played out at court.

Previous footage showed Reilly filling up a container of petrol and paying for it at a petrol station shortly before the attack took place at around 1am.

The trial continues...