THE friend of a man killed over drugs has been branded as a “deceitful, manipulative and cunning” liar, a court heard.

Colby Broderick is the main witness to the alleged murder of Abdul Deghayes in Elm Grove, Brighton, in February.

He claims he went with Mr Deghayes to buy drugs from a man he knew as “Frank”, who is Daniel Macleod, the defendant on trial for the murder.

Mr Broderick said he then witnessed Macleod, 37, standing over Mr Deghayes, 22, “whacking and punching” him.

He claimed that in the moments before the stabbing Macleod told Mr Deghayes: “Do you think I’m f****** stupid? Do you think you can rob me?”

Later, as Macleod walked back past Mr Deghayes, who was being shielded by Mr Broderick, he reportedly said: “Thank f*** you was here or I would have killed him.”

Adam Feest QC, prosecuting, says Macleod stabbed Abdul Deghayes eight times in a “short, but vicious” attack that may have been in revenge for a perceived insult.

In his 999 call Mr Broderick told police: “I’m a bit all over the place, I’m in fear. It was my duty of care just to get him the f***out of there.

“I’ve never seen anything like that before in my life. I’m petrified and panicking. This is very, very, very serious. I’m not going anywhere near Brighton.”

But at Brighton Crown Court this week, Edward Henry QC, defending, described Mr Broderick’s testimony as “atrocious”, “disgraceful” and “shocking”, and said it was full of “lies”.

He said Mr Broderick had “scarpered” from the scene of the attack and left Mr Deghayes to die, while then trying to extort money from Macleod.

Mr Henry said: “Mr Broderick said he was distraught, he had gone into fear and panic. If you are absolutely petrified, why are you constantly and persistently contacting the man you claim to be petrified of?

“Because you want money. You want leverage. This is not about the police, it’s about not giving up that man’s name to people that would kill him.”

Macleod claims he was ordered to hand over £10,000 in cash or cocaine to Mr Broderick. Mr Henry said the 999 calls were also a fiction, as at first Mr Broderick told police he had not seen the incident and did not know those involved. He told the police the wrong location, refused to tell officers where he was, and got “cut off”.

Mr Henry said: “Listen to his 999 calls again, you can actually hear again what a deceitful, manipulative and cunning man he is.

“He says he got cut off. This is probably a lie. This is shocking, he didn’t even use his own phone to ring 999.

“He talks about a duty of care, it is a fancy phrase, trying to make a good impression. But it is lies.

“To police he demonstrated a morose, aggressive and at other times self-piteous attitude. He will bargain about anything.”

Mr Broderick was driving while banned and Mr Henry said he even tried to haggle his way out of this charge in exchange for co-operating with police.

When police refused, Mr Broderick made threats that he knew where an officer lived.

Macleod, of Gypsy Road, Lambeth, denies murder.