A JEALOUS ex-boyfriend stabbed a man 17 times in fit of rage.

Ashley Luff, 32, from Fareham, was found guilty of attempted murder of Nathan Birch on August 19.

Mr Birch was brutally attacked by Luff in Fareham, suffering injuries to his neck, back, chest and arms, and a punctured lung, before fleeing the scene.

Simon Jones, from the Crown Prosecution Service, told the court Luff re-armed himself with a knife and waited for Nathan Birch, who was riding his bike on his way home, and derailed him.

He said: “There is no doubt that Nathan Birch could have died from his injuries, had he had not managed to escape and seek medical help."

Luff had been in an on and off relationship with his ex-girlfriend for five years, ending a week before she began seeing Mr Birch.

The jury at Portsmouth Crown Court heard how Ashley Luff previously went to a bar after seeing Mr Birch and his ex-girlfriend kissing on a live Facebook stream, where he threatened Mr Birch, telling him to watch his back.

Evidence revealed Luff messaged Mr Birch saying he would “do what it takes to be with her” and Mr Birch's workplace was called by a withheld number asking if he was working and when he would be working next.

Simon Jones said: “Ashley Luff was consumed by jealousy and rage. He could not accept that his ex-girlfriend had moved on and therefore took extreme measures to stop Nathan Birch seeing her.

“Ashley Luff stabbed him relentlessly in a frenzied attack. There was no doubt that his intention was to kill and thankfully, Nathan Birch managed to escape and survived this attack.”

The court heard the Crown Prosecution Service had to prove this was a premeditated and violent attack.

"The evidence presented to the jury at Portsmouth Crown Court showed that he had enquired as to the victims’ whereabouts, sent threatening messages and waited for the opportune moment when Mr Birch had finished his shift at the restaurant where he was working," Simon said.

Simon added: “There is no doubt that Mr Birch could have died from his injuries, had he had not managed to escape and seek medical help."

Both the prosecution and defences presented their cases to the jury and found Luff guilty of attempted murder.

The prosecution concluded: "The defendant claimed he acted in self-defence however there was no evidence to support his claims.

"We hope that with this verdict, Mr Birch and his girlfriend will now be able to move on with their lives.”

Luff is awaiting sentencing.