Friend ‘saw murdered teens with accused’

A FRIEND of two teenagers killed in 1977 saw the man accused of their murders in the pub where they were last seen alive, a court has heard.

Thursday, 16th October 2014, 11:21 am
The scene where Helen Scotts body was found.

Jackie Thomson identified Angus Sinclair as one of the two men she saw with Christine Eadie and Helen Scott at the World’s End pub in Edinburgh.

Sinclair, 69, has pleaded not guilty to assaulting, raping and murdering the 17-year-olds between October 15 and 16, 1977, between the pub and locations in East Lothian.

Ms Thomson, who was with the girls on the night they went missing, was giving evidence on the third day of Sinclair’s trial at the High Court in Livingston. She told the court she had left Christine and Helen in the World’s End with two men at around 10.45pm.

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Prosecuting, Lord Advocate Frank Mulholland said Ms Thomson had been shown a series of 12 photographs of men by the police in 2004.

She identified Mr Sinclair as one of the men seen with the girls before their deaths in 1997. Ms Thomson told the court she had attended Firhill High School with the girls.

Earlier in evidence, Ms Thomson described the events of the evening of October 15.

She said she met up with Ms Scott and had gone for a drink in the Mount Royal Hotel on Edinburgh’s Princes Street.

The two girls later met up with Ms Eadie and her flatmate, named Tony, she said. The four went to the Grosvenor Bar on the city’s High Street, then around six to eight different pubs, before the World’s End on the corner of the High Street and St Mary’s Street.

Ms Thomson told the court the girls had had an alcoholic drink in each pub they visited.

Describing their arrival at the World’s End just before 10pm, she said: “It was packed. It was really, really busy, there was no place to sit, we had to stand. We went to the bar and got a drink. After that me and Tony went to the toilet. When we came back two men were sitting with Christine and Helen.”

Ms Scott and Ms Eadie sat down with the men, while Ms Thomson and Tony were standing talking to some people Tony knew, she said. “Tony was offered to go to a party and I was asked and I said yes, I would go along,” she said. “I asked Christine and Helen and they said they didn’t want to come along to the party.” Ms Thomson said the girls had been “tipsy”, but not “rolling around drunk”.

Ms Thomson exited the pub at around 10.45pm, leaving the two girls with the men.

During cross-examination, Ian Duguid QC asked Ms Thomson about previous comments she had made to the police concerning the identification of Sinclair.

“Did you say ‘I wish now I had never seen the newspapers as I might be recognising his face from that’?” he asked.

Ms Thomson replied: “I can’t remember saying that.”

Judge Lord Matthews asked: “Would that have been what you were thinking at the time?”

Ms Thomson replied that it may have been. Mr Duguid went on to question Ms Thomson further about October 15.

“In the course of the evening Helen Scott and Christine Eadie fell out with one another on two occasions?” he asked.

Ms Thomson replied: “Yes.”

“One occasion was because Christine Eadie thought that Helen Scott was behaving as if she was drunk,” Mr Duguid continued.

“She had a drink in her, but she was fooling about,” Ms Thomson said.

The trial continues.