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Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

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Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

Post  saloongirl on Mon 11 Nov - 14:56

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2498912/Joanne-Lees-risked-Outback-killer-case-Prosecutor-says-girlfriend-murder-victim-Peter-Falconio-nearly-destroyed-case-behaviour.html

"British backpacker Joanne Lees almost destroyed the Crown case against the accused killer of her boyfriend Peter Falconio by her behaviour, the former prosecutor revealed for the first time yesterday.

Rex Wild, who persuaded a jury that 48-year-old Bradley Murdoch murdered Mr Falconio on a lonely road in the Australian outback in 2001, said it been difficult to get Miss Lees, who lives in a house she has since purchased in Huddersfield, Yorkshire, to even travel to Darwin for the trial.

‘There was absolutely no case without her,’ Mr Wild, who is now in private practice, told Sydney’s Sunday Telegraph.


‘There were phone calls made in the middle of the night to get her to come. She didn’t want to come to testify.’

The Falconio case remains a talking point in Britain and Australia to this day as Murdoch serves 28 years imprisonment for murdering the Briton, whose body has never been found.

Miss Lees has told how she and Mr Falconio - she was 27 and he was a year older at the time - were tricked into stopping their campervan by a stranger who was following them as they travelled at night near an outpost called Barrow Creek.

She said that when her boyfriend got out of the vehicle she heard what she thought was a shot. The man then dragged her from the campervan and threw her into his vehicle, but she said she escaped and hid in the roadside bushes before she was eventually rescued by two men in a passing lorry.


Mr Wild, speaking 10 years after Murdoch was arrested in South Australia and extradited to Darwin for the trial, told the paper that he could never quite fathom Miss Lees and considered her a risky witness.

She insisted, he said, on absolute control of her image, including refusing to walk in through the court’s front doors and instead chose to lie down under a jacket on the back seat of a car.

‘She was focused and completely cool and people might misread that and misunderstand that. People want some sympathy and tears and some lowering of the guard.’


Trial: Miss Lees insisted on lying under a coat in a car until she was persuaded to testify against Murdoch
Trial: Miss Lees insisted on lying under a coat when going to court, and had to be persuaded to testify against Bradley Murdoch in the first place

Criticism: Mr Wild also blasted Huddersfield-based Miss Lees, now 40, for her indifference after a two-year case
Criticism: Mr Wild also blasted Yorkshire-based Miss Lees, now 40, for indifference after a two-year case

The former prosecutor admitted he was worried when he found out that Miss Lees had been having an affair with another British backpacker shortly before she and Mr Falconio had set out to drive through the outback.

He recalled how she had upset the Falconio family by initially refusing to see them when they flew to Alice Springs after the murder. And he feared that she could derail attention from the accused man by inviting a dislike of her.

Convicted: Mechanic Bradley Murdoch was found guilty on December 13, 2005
Convicted: Mechanic Bradley Murdoch was found guilty on December 13, 2005

‘Potentially, but it didn’t happen,’ Mr Wild told the paper. ‘She was such a terrific witness as to the facts. And she’s a good-looking young woman. It didn’t matter in the end.’

Mr Wild said he was disappointed at the indifference Miss Lees had shown to the prosecution team after the two years of solid work they had spent on Murdoch’s prosecution.

The team had put her up in a nice apartment, flown a friend out from London to be with her during the trial, given her victim support, personal security guards and paid for the clothes that would make her presentable to a jury.

In a reference to the book she wrote about the affair she said ‘I suppose I should thank the prosecutors. But then again, they were only doing their job’

Mr Wild said the team believed her story, but ‘that got no mention. That’s pretty hurtful.’

The Falconio case has fascinated people around the world, mainly due to the account Miss Lees has given of the attack and the fact that Mr Falconio’s body has never been found.

Murdoch was convicted mostly because a speck of his DNA was found on Miss Lees’ T-shirt but those who have doubted her story say Murdoch’s DNA should have been all over her clothes if he had pulled her from the campervan and struggled with her.

Critics have raised several other suggestions as to how the DNA got there - and they have also raised a number of questions about the night of the attack.

They ask why Miss Lees did not see Mr Falconio’s body when she was pulled from the campervan and why Murdoch’s ‘very friendly’ Dalmation dog did not sniff her out as she hid in the bushes and he came looking for her and failed to find her."



I would be interested to know what people's views are on this case.

saloongirl
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Re: Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

Post  Guest on Mon 11 Nov - 16:46

something about her story never really added up.  

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Re: Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

Post  Not Born Yesterday on Mon 11 Nov - 18:12

A strange case indeed.
 
Here's a report from 2002, before anyone had been convicted.
 
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-126641/Did-Outback-Peter-fake-death.html

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Re: Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

Post  saloongirl on Tue 12 Nov - 19:08

I forgot I posted this! I too have always had my suspicions about her. I find it interesting to compare it to the McCann case in that the media had no problem with pointing out the discrepancies in this case but don't have the guts to do it with the McCann's.

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Re: Joanne Lees risked Outback Killer case

Post  Guest on Wed 13 Nov - 10:59

saloongirl wrote:I forgot I posted this! I too have always had my suspicions about her. I find it interesting to compare it to the McCann case in that the media had no problem with pointing out the  discrepancies in this case but don't have the guts to do it with the McCann's.
because there's a child involved. got to tread carefully.  

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