THE ex-wife of a Basingstoke dad accused of murdering his children's nanny in America is refusing to let the youngsters be quizzed by his lawyers.

David Taylor's defence team want to interview the children, who were in the house at the time of the slaying.

They have now launched a legal bid in Britain to allow them to speak to the youngsters.

They hope to show that Taylor, 43, who moved to the US from The Street, Old Basing, was in mental turmoil when he hit Milena Pitkova with a hammer on March 29, 1999.

Adam and Hannah Taylor, now 16 and 13 respectively, were the only others in the house at the time.

They have since moved to Wiltshire, where they are living with their biological mother - Taylor's ex-wife, Susan Hollins.

Taylor's state-appointed lawyers have now notified British authorities that they want to question the children.

Milena Pitkova had served as the children's au pair since 1995.

During that time, she and Taylor are believed to have become lovers but, in the days before her death, Pitkova told Taylor that she had met another man and wanted out of the relationship.

In a statement to police after his arrest, Taylor said he killed Pitkova by hitting her on the head with the hammer.

He said he then dragged her to another room, where he grabbed her around the neck and choked her. The children said they were awakened by their distraught and crying father about 11 pm who told them that "Milly had run off".

After aborting a plan to stay at a friend's house, Taylor took the children back home and told them to go upstairs and wait.

He allegedly then called police and admitted that he had just killed someone in his house.

If he is convicted, Taylor could get be sent to jail for up to 60 years.