A witness who said Robert Pickton had described to him how he killed prostitutes sparred with a defence lawyer yesterday on whether the witness had lied about past drug abuse and criminal activity.


Prosecution witness Andrew Bellwood was at times feisty, accusing attorney Adrian Brooks of manipulating his words, but at other times he seemed flustered as they reviewed documents from a February 1999 court appearance in which he pleaded guilty to stealing to support a drug habit.


Bellwood, 37, who lived briefly at Pickton’s farm, also denied he asked police to drop a criminal charge against him in return for his co-operation in this trial.


Bellwood openly admitted he has a criminal record and has struggled with cocaine.

He sounded at times clinical in describing the physical and mental impact of his drug abuse, but grew more agitated under heated questioning about statements he gave years ago to police, the courts and a rehab centre about his drug use.