A Saudi prince on trial in Britain for the murder of a servant was not in a gay relationship with the victim, his defence lawyer said in court Wednesday.
At the opening of the trial Tuesday, prosecutors alleged that Prince Saud Abdulaziz Bin Nasir al Saud, 34, killed Bandar Abdullah Abdulaziz, 32, in a ferocious attack that had a "sexual element."
The victim was found dead on February 15 in a London hotel room he shared with the prince.
"The evidence establishes quite conclusively that he is either gay or that he has homosexual tendencies," prosecutor Jonathan Laidlaw had alleged in relation to the prince.
But on Wednesday, the prince's defence council, John Kelsey-Fry, said during cross examination: "It is not accepted that this was in fact a gay couple."
The barrister was responding to testimony from Dobomir Dimitrov, a hotel porter, who said he would told the court: "I would describe them as a gay couple."
Prince Saud, who is a grandson of the Saudi king, admits killing Abdulaziz but denies murder and a separate charge of grievous bodily harm.
The prosecution alleged that the prince killed his victim by strangulation in their shared bedroom following weeks of beatings and mistreatment. The jury trial continues.
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