PROSECUTORS are today set to open their case in the murder trial over the death of Southampton schoolgirl Lucy McHugh.

At Winchester Crown Court, William Mousley QC is set to outline the Crown Prosecution’s case against Stephen Nicholson, who is accused of the teenager’s murder.

It comes after a 12 person jury was selected from a panel of 50 potential jurors.

At the start of the trial, which officially began on Monday, Nicholson, pleaded not guilty to three charges of rape against Lucy when she was 12 years old and two charges of sexual activity with a child when she was aged 13.

The 25-year-old had previously pleaded not guilty to her murder.

Lucy left her home in Mansel Road East, Southampton, Hampshire, at about 9am on July 25, police have said.

Her body was found the next morning in woodland nearly two miles away.

A post-mortem examination revealed she died from stab wounds.