A BARRHEAD thug who stabbed his friend to death is facing a lengthy prison sentence.

Ben McCulloch, 27, knifed 26-year-old Stephen Quigley in the head at his home on March 23 last year.

He then drove Stephen to a closed section of the Royal Alexandra Hospital, six minutes from the Accident and Emergency department, and left him there.

The disorientated victim tried to walk to A&E for help but was found dead outside a daytime ward the next morning.

The High Court in Glasgow heard that Neilston man Stephen would have survived if he had received immediate medical treatment.

McCulloch, who was initially charged with murder, today admitted a lesser offence of culpable homicide.

The court heard the two friends were drinking at McCulloch's flat in Barrhead on the day of the incident.

They were in good spirits as they uploaded video clips to social media.

Prosecutor Angela Gray told the court: "Later that afternoon, McCulloch and Mr Quigley became involved in an altercation.

"During this, McCulloch took control of the knife and struck Mr Quigley, inflicting a blow to his head, causing the long-incised wound on the right side of his head."

The weapon has never been recovered.

Disqualified driver McCulloch dropped his bleeding victim at the Paisley hospital at 5.25pm.

Ben McCulloch knifed Stephen Quigley in the head last year

Miss Gray added: "The A&E is around a six-minute walk from where Mr Quigley was dropped off by McCulloch."

Stephen was seen to be "unsteady on his feet" when spotted on CCTV.

He was found dead by nursing staff at 7am the next morning.

It was established that the injury was caused by a weapon with a sharp edge and moderate force was used.

Miss Gray added: "This would have resulted in major blood loss and this traumatic injury, along with significant drug and alcohol intoxication, is considered to have been the cause of death.

"The injury to his head would have been survivable if prompt medical attention had been secured."

McCulloch was arrested more than two weeks later after he was traced to an Airbnb property in Newcastle.

Ian Duguid QC, defending, told the court: "He knows the fact that his friend died in such circumstances is a matter of considerable difficulty for his family and he wishes to express his apologies.

"He chose to drop him off at the hospital, near the Scottish Ambulance headquarters.

"His position was he didn't want to go to A&E and be involved in his admission and giving details about his injury to the hospital."

Sentence was deferred until next month so that background reports can be prepared.

Judge Lord Mulholland told McCulloch: "Be under no illusions, you were responsible for this man's death and you accept that you inflicted a significant injury to this man with a knife.

"You can expect a lengthy period in prison."