Two men accused of murdering Lincoln pensioner Sonny Grey were serial car thieves and had made around 500 raids together in the last two years, a jury heard.
Sonny Grey died on October 31, 2011, at City Hospital in Nottingham.
Two days earlier he had been attacked in his home in Westwick Gardens, Lincoln, and had a kettle of boiling water poured over him.
Rocky Curtis, 25, of Newbridge Lane, Wisbech, and Robert Holmes, 24, of Redmoor Lane, Wisbech, are both accused of murdering the 70-year-old. They were arrested with Curtis' now-deceased older brother Tom.
They deny murder, but taking to the stand in Nottingham Crown Court today, Holmes admitted that the three of them made their living stealing cars and scrap metal from up and down the country and that they had been on hundreds of raids.
Prosecutor Peter Joyce QC alleged that the trio had been in a Volkswagen Touareg in the Westwick Gardens area in the hours before the attack which led to Mr Grey's death.
The vehicle had been seen in the area twice during the day and again after dark.
But when asked what they were doing in the area, both Curtis and Holmes said they had been "trawling" for cars and would often scout an area during the day before returning later in the evening.
Meanwhile, Holmes' common-law wife Stephanie Lawrence also took to the stand. She admitted under oath that although she did not know what Holmes did for a living, she said he was "like a teddy bear".
When asked to explain why, Miss Lawrence added: "He's kind, funny and wouldn't hurt a fly."
The trial continues.