Two men appear in court over murder of Highland man Ross MacGillivray
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Two men have appeared in court charged with the murder of Ross MacGillivray (36) in Inverness just over a week ago.
Craig Hayden, a 28 year old from Alness, and 21 year old Leon Headey from Liverpool appeared before Sheriff Eilidh Macdonald and made no plea to the allegation that they murdered Mr MacGillivray, tying him up by his wrists and repeatedly striking him on the head. .
The charge states that the pair, whilst acting with another, restrained their victim and repeatedly struck him on the head and body by means unknown, inflicting blunt force head injuries.
They also made no plea to a charge of attempting to pervert the course of justice.
That charge alleges that they cleaned Mr Macgillivray's body, removed his clothing, and other items from the address in St Ninian's Drive, Inverness between November 11 and 12 and disposed of them in the Caledonian Canal.
It is further alleged that they destroyed a mobile phone by smashing it.
Emergency services were called to the scene and an area of the nearby Caledonian Canal was cordoned off.
A heavy police presence was in the estate for several days and police confirmed they were treating his death as ‘murder’ following the results of a post-mortem.
The man leading the enquiry, DCI Martin MacDougall said "a significant degree of violence" had been used.
He issued a public appeal and a description of the two suspects who it is believed were arrested in Aberdeen almost a week later.
In a statement released through the force, his family said: "Ross was a loving husband, a doting father, loved by his family and friends and all who met him."
Hayden's lawyer David Patterson and Headey's solicitor John MacColl both confirmed that no application had been made for their clients to be released on bail. Their clients were both remanded.
Headey also appeared on a second petition today, facing a charge of attempted murder after an alleged axe attack on an Alness man in Kirkside in the Easter Ross town on October 23 this year.
Another Alness man, Lee Fraser, previously made a private appearance on this charge, at the end of last month. He was released on bail at full committal stage after a successful application by Mr Patterson.
The charge states that Headey, whilst acting with others, assaulted a man, repeatedly struck him on the head and body with an axe, a hammer or similar implement and a quantity of knives, causing him to fall to the ground to his severe injury, permanent disfigurement and to the danger to his life, and did attempt to murder him.
Headey was also charged with possessing an offensive weapon, namely an axe. He was remanded in custody as no application for bail was made by Mr MacColl on these charges either.