THE details of a Worcestershire housewife who disappeared 40 years ago were passed on to police investigating serial killer Fred West.

Jurors at Worcester Crown Court heard evidence examining whether or not the infamous serial killer could be responsible for the death of Mrs Venables in 1982.

Mrs Venables' husband David denies her murder, with Mrs Venables' remains being discovered in a septic tank at their former farm in Kempsey.

The Fred West link came about after Mr Venables told police he had been contacted by an unknown woman, who claimed she was picked up by West from a bus stop in Worcester before managing to escape.

Evesham Journal: TRIAL: David Venables denies killing his wife BrendaTRIAL: David Venables denies killing his wife Brenda

The woman, whose name remains unknown, reportedly told Mr Venables that West could have picked up Brenda in a similar way.

Investigating officer DC Jennings from West Mercia Police examined reports of a similar nature from the time, finding only five reports matching that description.

Of these, the women identified were all younger than Mrs Venables, who was 49 at the time of her disappearance and did not match the age profile of West's victims, who were all teenage girls or young women.

In addition, none of West's victims were found outside either Much Marcle in Herefordshire or Cromwell Street in Gloucester, and none were found in a septic tank.

The court heard Brenda Venables' name was on a list of five women passed onto Gloucestershire Police during the investigation into the crimes of West and his wife Rosemarie.

Evesham Journal: CASE: How the Worcester News reported on the case in 1982CASE: How the Worcester News reported on the case in 1982

Of these five women, two were identified as victims of the Wests, but Brenda Venables' death was not linked to them, largely due to her not fitting the age profile of the rest of the victims, DC Jennings confirmed.

During his 1994 police interviews, West did mention Kempsey in relation to a woman he knew who he believed had lived "in Kempsey or out that way" - later saying to appropriate adult Janet Leach that there were more victims who were never found or identified.

Earlier in the day (June 27) the court heard from former piggery manager Trevor Woods, who worked for the farm in Defford run by Mr Venables' brother Peter.

At the time, Mr Woods said, they were not asked to help search for her, and Mrs Venables' disappearance "didn't come up" in conversations with her husband after she went missing.

The trial continues.