A MAN had a “big smile on his face” shortly before he was gunned down in the street, a court heard.
A friend of Mohammed Abdi described the 25 year-old’s last moments amid apparently violent scenes in Edinburgh’s Duddingston area last May.
Mohammed El-Halili recalled witnessing “flashes” that night before finding Mr Abdi in a pool of blood.
He was giving evidence at the trial of seven men, who deny murdering Mr Abdi.
The High Court in Glasgow heard claims that Mr Abdi had been involved in drug dealing and that Mr El-Halili was a “driver” for him and his associates.
The jury was told of a another group operating in Edinburgh at the same time.
Prosecutor Iain McSporran asked Mr El-Halili if this was a problem and he replied: “There were words here and there. Obviously there was competition for customers.”
The 21 year-old witness later told how he was driving Mr Abdi and two other men last May when they became aware of a Ford Fiesta and a people carrier nearby.
Mr El-Halili recalled “putting his foot down” before the other vehicles went after him.
He told how he was worried he and his friends would be “outnumbered” and that he was “nervous, anxious”.
His car was eventually struck by the other vehicles and asked by Mr McSporran how he felt at the time, the witness said: “I had just been crashed twice - how do you think I was feeling?”
Mr El-Halili recalled others in his car getting out, but he stayed put.
He remembered “everything kicking off” with Mr Abdi armed with a baseball bat and an associate clutching a knife.
He added: “It seemed like forever (it was going on for), but it could have been seconds or minutes.”
Mr El-Halili then told the jury how Mr Abdi went past his vehicle “with a big smile on his face” amid the apparent chaos.
The witness then described seeing “flashes”, but was not aware how many.
He recalled doing a U-turn in his car to where Mr Abdi was.
Mr El-Halili told the court: “There was something wrong. I saw him on the floor in a pool of blood.”
Despite this, Mr El-Halili and one of his friends left the scene as a police vehicle approached.
He and other men later went to the hospital where Mr Abdi had been rushed - but the witness thought his friend had only suffered a neck injury.
Mr El-Halili added: “I was surprised, shocked. I had no idea how serious it was.”
Mohamud Mohamud, 30, Ahmed Ahmed, 28, Cadil Huseen, 23, Hussein Ali, 26, 30 year-old Liban Ahmed – also known as Jama - Said Fadal, 32, and Said Tarabi, 27, deny murder.
The trial, before Judge Lord Turnbull, continues.