Man convicted of murdering his grandfather loses appeal

A TOOWOOMBA man convicted of brutally murdering his grandfather has lost his bid to overturn his conviction in Queensland's highest court.

Corey John Lovell and his mother, Samantha-Ann Brownlow, both of Toowoomba, were jailed for life for murdering Bundaberg man Robin Behrendorff in his house in 2011.

Mr Behrendorff, who was 62 years old, was Brownlow's stepfather and Lovell's grandfather. In 2013, the pair was convicted of bludgeoning and stabbing him to death at his Burnett Heads home.

One of his neighbours found his body in the laundry with a knife lying on his chest.

Lovell appealed his murder conviction at Queensland's highest court, where his lawyers argued the jury should have had a doubt about the reliability of a witness's evidence at his trial.

His lawyers said the prosecution relied on the evidence of a girl who Lovell had told that he killed his grandfather.

But the girl retracted those admissions when giving evidence and Lovell's legal team said this should have caused the jury to doubt her evidence.

Lovell's legal team also argued in the Court of Appeal that the trial judge should have warned the jury about the unreliability of the girls' evidence.

In a judgment delivered on Friday, Justice David Boddice said it was a question for the jury whether to accept the witnesses as reliable and truthful.

He also said it was open to the jury to be satisfied that Lovell intended to kill or cause grievous bodily harm to his grandfather based on forensic evidence.

"There was compelling direct evidence of (Lovell's) involvement in the infliction of brutal and repeated acts of violence on the deceased," Justice Boddice said.

He also said Lovell had agreed to travel to Bundaberg to kill his grandfather for a substantial financial sum.

Mr Behrendorff had left Ms Brownlow an inheritance worth almost $550,000 and the mother promised her son $50,000 to help her kill the elderly man, the judgment said.

Justice Boddice also said there was no miscarriage of justice in Lovell's legal team's claims that the judge did not direct the jury properly.

Lovell's appeal was dismissed.

- ARM NEWSDESK


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