Bug recorded accused dad for 300 hours

27/04/2020 Posted by admin

Newcastle courthouse. A CLARENCE Town man accused of killing his severely disabled daughter in 2011 allegedly told police: “I suppose you think I did it? You have to prove I did it, don’t you?”, according to court documents.

The “unusual” comment and other allegedexamples of the man’s conduct and demeanour after the nine-year-old girl was found dead will be among the factors the prosecution rely upon to say the man is guilty of manslaughter.

And that reliance, according to the man’s defence, is what makes 74 discs containing more than 300 hours of covertly recorded conversations “particularly significant” to the case.

The matter has dragged through the courts since the man was charged in 2014, and is currently delayed over a fight between the parties over who should transcribe the voluminous recordings.

TheNewcastle Heraldrevealed on Thursday that the case against the man looks set to be delayed further as his legal team prepares to take Newcastle District Court Judge Roy Ellis’s ruling against a temporary stay to the Court of Criminal Appeal (CCA).

“Presumably, the Crown will ask the jury to draw on its understanding of human experience to reason that such a comment was unusual and indicative of guilt,” the man’s barrister, Bret Walker, SC, said as part of defence CCA submissions.

Mr Walker submits that, to properly evaluate that argument, the jury, and the man’s defence,should have access to the transcripts of the listening device material, which recorded the man in “unguarded circumstances” in the wake of his daughter’s death.

The prosecution claim the tapes –which were recorded in the man’s home over three weeks in August, 2011, and the same period in April, 2013 –picked up nothing inculpatory, meaningevidence that shows, or tends to show, a person’s involvement or guilt.

They say they don’t plan to rely on the tapes during a trial currently set down for July.

But the defence want to make sure there is nothing exculpatory, or favourable to the man,on there.

In the meantime, neither side will transcribe the discs.

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