A man attacked with an iron bar and a hatchet will be allowed to testify by video link from an English court during the trial of his alleged attacker.
Trevor Gowdy, from Ballyclare, was found unconscious in the Monkstown estate, Newtownabbey, in December 2002.
Mark Haddock, 37, of Mount Vernon Park, Belfast, named in court as a top UVF member, is accused of attempted murder.
Despite defence objections, Mr Justice Weatherup allowed a prosecution application for the video testimony.
Mr Haddock's trial began at Belfast Crown Court last year, but Mr Gowdy broke down in the witness box in November and was deemed medically unfit to give evidence.
A psychiatric report found he was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder and feared for his life should he have to come back to Northern Ireland.
But the psychiatrist felt he would be fit to give evidence by video link from outside Northern Ireland.
Mr Gowdy, a nightclub doorman, suffered skull fractures, a broken leg, stab wounds and bruising all over his body in the attack.
Police found him lying unconscious on the ground and his car had also been set on fire.
He is now living in England under a witness protection scheme.
Mr Haddock's lawyers claimed on Tuesday that the bid to testify via video was an unprecedented move as the victim had already given partial evidence.
They said the extent of Mr Gowdy's post-traumatic stress disorder he had been suffering was so severe that his evidence would have little worthwhile quality.
The defence said they might ask for the trial to be halted if the prosecution's application was successful.
The accused has been charged with arson, assault and unlawful imprisonment as well as attempted murder.
A prosecution barrister read out details of a psychiatric report on Mr Gowdy's condition .
The doctor who prepared the report said: "I think he fears if he returns to Northern Ireland he will be murdered.
"If he has to return to Northern Ireland to give evidence in this case, my opinion is he will experience intense fear and distress."