A WELL educated academic who studied criminals and their behaviour is also in the dock facing charges following the murder of Jahmel Jones, a court was told.

Rachel Kenehan is at least a decade older than three men sitting alongside her. They are accused of murdering the 23-year-old by shooting him dead at a Southampton flat in April last year, while she faces charges of assisting them and perverting the course of justice.

Winchester Crown Court heard how the 35-year-old achieved a Bachelor of Arts honours in Sociology at the University of London and two Masters at the London School of Economics.

She was also working on her PhD, the court was told.

But she became involved with murder accused Pierre Lewis in March 2012 after applying to become a 'mentor' for criminals on their release from prison, helping them to lead a law abiding life.

"They formed a relationship," Ian Lawrie QC told jurors and wanted to marry him and have his child, adding that she was in fact "cut from very different cloth".

Kenehan was aware of the drug dealing and would assist by hiring cars and eventually supplied the use of her own vehicle that she bought in 2013, Mr Lawrie said.

He then told jurors of a "highly incriminating series of texts between Rachel Kenehan and Pierre Lewis showing her knowledge and involvement. In the supply of Class A drugs supply".

Kenehan, of Hewlwett Road, London, denies the charges.