Inquest Into Turkish Deaths

Last updated : 20 January 2004 By Kevin Markey

Both were giving evidence on the second day of the inquests into the deaths of Christopher Loftus and Kevin Speight.

They were in Istanbul, Turkey for the Uefa Cup semi-final against Galatasaray in April 2000.

Mark Valentine told West Yorkshire coroner David Hinchliff that he was drawn to a man lying on the ground with a blood-stained shirt and another man standing near the body holding a knife blade.

He ran to the injured man, who he recognised as Mr Loftus, and started administering mouth-to-mouth resuscitation but continued to be attacked by Turkish fans.

Peter Hopton was another fan to offer assistance and he told the inquest how he too gave Mr Loftus mouth-to-mouth.

Both witnesses also claimed to have been struck with batons by Turkish police while trying to help.

A 22-year-old man was jailed in May 2002 for killing Mr Speight, who was 40 and from Farsley in Leeds, and 35-year-old Mr Loftus who lived in Burmantofts, Leeds.

Last year, an appeal court overturned his sentence and ordered a retrial.