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Murder accused to claim he was drunk and on drugs

Thomas Valliday, the young Belfast man accused of murdering veteran republican Francis ‘Bap’ McGreevy, is to tell his trial that at the time he was not only drunk, but was “drugged as well”.

The assertion came from the 21-year-old's defence lawyer Philip Magee SC as he questioned a former girlfriend concerning Valliday's condition at the time.

Mr Magee's cross-examination of the girl, who cannot be identified, continued in the absence of the public at the end of her video-taped police interviews, which were played to Belfast Crown Court.

In the tapes the girl claimed that when she initially passed the Ross Street flat of the 51-year-old father-of-two she heard “noises as if the house was being wrecked” and then saw a drunken Valliday who told her to ring for an ambulance.

Time and again Mr Magee asked the girl about Valliday's condition, and on each occasion she told the court that to her Valliday “was drunk”, and even agreed that she had told police he was “blocked”.

However, the girl admitted at one stage “I forget things easily” when asked what she and Valliday had talked about after leaving Mr McGreevy's flat.

She admitted that in the time she knew Valliday he had taken a number of drugs, dope, ecstasy and cocaine, and once “blues”.

Asked if Valliday was taking “these drugs by the bucket-load”, the girl said: “No, I would not say all of the time, well not that I know of, all the time.”

“It never occurred to you that Thomas Valliday was taking drugs,” asked Mr Magee.

“No”, came the reply.

“He was both drunk and heavily heavily drugged?”

“Well, I don’t know that,” said the girl.

“Well, he might have (taken drugs) and that would explain his behaviour,” said Mr Magee.

“I don’t know,” said the girl.

At hearing.

Belfast Telegraph