A Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) coach has told a court that he 'thought Meggy was a bully and might intimidate people.'

David Butlin, who once coached the England MMA team in the World Cup, has been giving evidence today in the M62 gun conspiracy trial.

Butlin and two other men deny conspiracy to possess firearms and ammunition with intent to endanger life.

Butlin, of Huddersfield Road, Holmfirth, is also facing a charge of having an offensive weapon, namely a push dagger, on the day that Yassar Yaqub was shot by a police marksman beside the M62 at Ainley Top on January 2 last year.

Butlin has been asked why he went to Bradford that day, where a meeting involving Mr Yaqub and Mohammed Nisar Khan, also known as Meggy, had taken place at Cafe de Akbar, in Leeds Road.

Today, Peter Moulson QC, prosecuting, cross-examined Butlin and put it to him that he was "in Yassar's team that afternoon."

But he denied this, saying it was "a few friends."

He refuted the suggestion that he drove so close to the Audi to provide cover to prevent any of Meggy's team following.

Mr Moulson said Butlin did not reply to police questions because "you wanted to distance yourself from Yassar Yaqub because you knew he was carrying a gun."

Butlin said: "No, not at all. I work. I don't get up to anything criminal."

Butlin said Mr Yaqub wanted him to attend the meeting at Cafe de Akbar because it made him feel more "secure and comfortable."

Mr Moulson suggested: "Because you knew how to use your fists?"

"Possibly," Butlin replied.

"That's why you were armed," Mr Moulson added.

"No," Butlin said.

Butlin agreed it would be "horrible" to deliver a blow with the push dagger in his fist.

Butlin said he heard Mr Yaqub had an issue with one of Meggy' s friends. Butlin said he did not expect any violence at the meeting.

"I thought Meggy was a bully and that he might intimidate people," Butlin said.

He was not prepared to sit down with him because of his character and reputation, the court was told.

Butlin assumed the car debt owed to Mr Yaqub was substantial because of the trouble it had caused his business.

He said Leeds Road in Bradford is covered by CCTV so it was all right.

Butlin went on: "Meggy was doing him a favour in recovering some money. There was no animosity there."

Butlin said he did not know the amount but guessed it could be up to £30,000.

Mr Yaqub was worried because he hadn't told his father he had taken a deposit on a car and the buyer had not paid the balance owed.

Butlin said that when he got into the Scirocco: "I didn't believe we were heading for trouble."

He added: "I wished now I hadn't."

Asked why he had a stealth SIM card in his phone, Butlin said he had never heard it called that.

"People all over Huddersfield have got them," he said.

He used to speak to Mr Yaqub on WhatsApp.

Mr Moulson will make his closing speech to the jury tomorrow morning. The panel will then hear from the three defence barristers before the trial judge Mr Justice Turner sums up the case.

Asked by Simon Kealey QC, defending, 'did you want to help the police?' Butlin replied: ' I'd just seen them shoot my friend.'

Earlier, Butlin told Mr Kealey he was not aware there was a firearm in the Audi and he did not know initially that Mr Yaqub had been shot. His solicitor told him he had passed away.

Butlin said he had suffered mental health problems for many years, including paranoia and depression. After the shooting: 'I was very paranoid. I was in shock and disbelief.'

The trial continues.