The trial of a man accused of murdering and robbing a restaurateur nearly 40 years ago has been told of large bets being placed around the time at a bookmaker.
Riasat Khan is alleged to have killed Kazi Ahmad – co-owner of the Raj Dulal curry house – at a flat on Aberdeen’s Rosemount Viaduct in October 1978.
Mr Ahmad was a regular gambler and the High Court in Edinburgh heard previously that he often visited the casino accompanied by Khan.
Yesterday, a former betting shop worker recalled a punter walking into a branch of William Hill in the capital and staking £900 on a series of losing bets.
Heather Picken told a jury that the sum was a lot for the late 1970s and that only a small number of gamblers spent such large amounts of money.
She said the man was carrying a black bin liner and used £100 notes to place the bets, which she said was “unusual”.
She recalled that her boss was concerned about the amount of money being put on bets by the male, who she said was Asian, tall, slim and had “quite a lot of hair.”
She said: “I remember my boss worrying about what he would do if the bets won. He was concerned whether he would have enough money to pay him out.”
The court heard the bookmaker in question was located 75 yards from Edinburgh’s Haymarket station.
Khan, who is also accused of stealing a sum of money from Mr Ahmad, denies murder.
His lawyers have lodged a special defence that states he acted in self-defence after the deceased had first attacked him.
Forensic pathologist James Grieve told the court that Mr Ahmad died from a total of seven stab wounds, four in the chest and three in the neck.
Prosecutors closed their case against Khan yesterday afternoon.
Advocate depute Jane Farquharson told judge Lord Beckett that she was withdrawing a charge that Khan stole a knife from the Raj Dulal and withdrew allegations from the murder charge that he tied Mr Ahmad’s wrists behind his back and then covered his head with an item of clothing.
The trial continues on Tuesday.