A north-east murder accused told a friend he would pay him £500 to drop him off somewhere and pick him up later and to make sure he was seen in Huntly or Inverurie in the intervening time, a court has heard.
Steven Sidebottom is on trial at the High Court in Aberdeen accused of bludgeoning Brian McKandie to death at his rural cottage in Badenscoth in March 2016.
And today the court heard from Graeme Gray, a friend of his who met him while socialising in Inverurie.
Gray told the court that Sidebottom, 25, approached him and offered him £500 to do a driving job in February 2016.
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When asked if any more details given he said: “It was never described, he was going to get something from someone.”
The 32-year-old was pressed to give more details about what Sidebottom had told him and said he wanted to be dropped off somewhere and then for Mr Gray to drive to “Huntly or Inverurie.”
When asked about the purpose of this he said: “To be seen somewhere else and not to be with him.”
Advocate depute Iain McSporran asked: “What car would you use?”
He replied: “My own car, he offered me his vehicle.”
Gray went on to say that he opted not to give him the lift as £500 was “crazy money” to give someone a lift.
Sidebottom, of Crannabog Farm, denies the charge against him and has launched two special defences. One claims he was elsewhere including at his home, the Vale Hotel in Fyvie, the Co-Op in Newmachar and at St Peters Hall in Aberdeen.
The other incriminates another man, from Bridge of Don.
The trial, before Lord Uist, continues.