An Irishman accused of murder at a resort in Tenerife has made an impassioned plea to jurors at the end of the fourth day of his trial.
Keith Burke’s lawyer told the court there was "no evidence whatsoever" linking him to the fatal stabbing of a local man during a late-night fight two years ago.
Mr Burke, 21, accepted the opportunity offered by the trial judge to address the court as the proceedings came to a close.
Speaking through an interpreter, he expressed his "regret" at the tragic outcome of his confrontation with Abraham Báez, 24, who died from a stab wound to the neck in April 2010.
"My heart goes out to the family of Abraham. Nobody deserves to die and I feel partly responsible because I was there that night, but I swear I did not kill anybody," Mr Burke said.
During his final submission, Mr Burke's lawyer, Avelino Míguez, warned the jury of nine "not to misinterpret" his client's comments, which had to be clarified after a translation error.
"Everyone here is sorry that someone died, including Keith, who has expressed regret also at the fact that, if he had not become involved in a fight that fateful night, he would not have spent nearly three years on remand in jail" he said.
Mr Míguez questioned the credibility of several witnesses called by the prosecution and also challenged crucial forensic evidence submitted during this week's trial.
"I am sure the jury, like me, find it remarkable that my client's fingerprints were not found on the alleged murder weapon, yet expert witnesses have described in detail how the stabbing must have occurred, including the angle of delivery of the fatal wound.
“Even more surprising is the fact that neither the victim's DNA nor his blood were found on a knife that was allegedly plunged 5cm into his neck" he said during a 45-minute closing speech.
"Bear in mind also that the blood found on Keith's clothes was his own, not that of Abraham Báez,” he added.
Mr Míguez also drew attention to medical reports stating that three cuts noted on his client's right hand, which the prosecution said were caused by Burke holding a knife-blade very tightly, "were consistent with attempts to defend himself from attack".
Concerning letters written to his girlfriend, Sara Stuart, in which the defendant accepted responsibility for the killing, the lawyer asked the jury to consider that Burke "was alone in jail in a foreign country and the letters were the only outlet for his feelings towards the girl he loved, who was also in prison”.
“He has always felt guilty, but not because he stabbed anyone.
“The letters prove absolutely nothing except that he would have done anything to have his girlfriend set free".
Ms Stuart's lawyer, Alvaro Léon, asked the jury to "deliberate very carefully" before deciding whether the evidence presented proved that, as charged, she had assaulted Mr Báez's girlfriend with a large piece of rock found at the scene.
"None of the witnesses to the fight between the couples saw a rock being picked up or thrown. You may feel that someone must be made to pay for the head injury caused to Miss Negrín, but you must be absolutely sure it was my client if you convict her".
Mr Léon concluded by reminding jurors that they are empowered to recommend a suspended sentence if they consider that Ms Stuart, who spent nine months on remand and has not been allowed to leave Tenerife since her release on bail in February 2011, has "already suffered enough" as a result of this unfortunate incident.
"Even the police have admitted that, had Mr Báez not died, this would have been written off as just another fight between drunk people and my client would never have been sent to prison", he concluded.
The jury is due to commence deliberations tomorrow.