Thursday 8 December 2016

Jill Meagher's killer fights two rape convictions based on 'problematic identification'

Published 09/03/2016 | 08:00

Irish woman Jill Meagher who was murdered in Melbourne. Pic Ciara Wilkinson.
Irish woman Jill Meagher who was murdered in Melbourne. Pic Ciara Wilkinson.

The Australian man serving a life sentence for the rape and murder of Jill Meagher is appealing his convictions for raping two woman prior to murdering the 29-year-old Irish woman.

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Adrian Bayley (45) was sentenced to 46 years in jail without parole last year after being found guilty in three separate trials of the brutal rapes of three women.

Victoria's Court of Appeal has today heard submissions from Bayley's lawyer Saul Holt that two of the ten woman he has been convicted of raping in St Kilda may have wrongly identified him.   

According to The Sydney Morning Herald,  Mr Holt told the appeal court that weaknesses in evidence presented in the trial following the rape of a sex worker in 2000 were "multiple and profound".

Adrian Ernest Bayley has been convicted of murdering Jill Meagher
Adrian Ernest Bayley has been convicted of murdering Jill Meagher

One of the only two photographs shown to the victim was a Facebook photo of Bayley taken 11 years after the incident, he said.

The timeframe between the attack and the victim's identification was problemation, he argues, especially coupled with the killer's notoriety at the time.

Mr Holt made simillar submissions as regards Bayley's conviction over the 2012 rape of a Dutch backpacker.

The solicitor is currently acting for the the former pastry chef pro bono as Bayley's application for appeal funding has been denied again.

The appeal continues.

When Mr Bayley murdered Ms Meagher in September 2012, he was on parole after serving eight years for raping six prostitutes in 2000.

Mr Bayley snatched the Louth-born woman off Brunswick's Sydney Road as she walked home from a night out with friends.

He was serving a life sentence with a 35-year minimum for Ms Meagher's rape and murder when he was handed an additional 18-year sentence for raping three other women.

His appeal against the 2013 sentence for the rape and murder of Ms Meagher was rejected by the Court of Appeal.

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