News

Defence says Daniel Morcombe murder confession a fake

THE intimate details of how covert police officers created the illusion of a powerful organised crime gang to secure a "complete confession" from Daniel Morcombe's accused murderer will be unravelled over the next six weeks.

But details began trickling out as the Crown opened its case in Brisbane Supreme Court on Tuesday, revealing for the first time the careful planning police undertook to catch Brett Peter Cowan.

Crown prosecutor Michael Byrne said a team of covert officers carefully constructed 24 scenarios to convince Mr Cowan that his new friends were deeply entrenched in criminal activity.

Morcombe accused wanted to have "fun" with Daniel

Some scenarios enabled him to observe apparent criminal activity while others allowed him to get involved.

Every scenario reinforced how important "loyalty, respect and honesty" were to the gang.

"The overall object was that he believed he had to demonstrate his trustworthiness for the gang particularly in light of a big job that was coming up," Mr Byrne said.

Cowan knew if he could prove his mettle then he could be part of a "big job" that could net him $100,000.

Jury hears Daniel Morcombe's parents kept his belongings

Mr Byrne told the jury the confession came during a meeting with the "big boss" at a hotel in Perth.

"You will see (Mr Cowan) say - 'yeah ok no yeah I did it'," he said.

"I never got to molest him… he panicked, I panicked, I grabbed him around the throat and just before I knew it he was dead."

Mr Byrne said Mr Cowan took his new found friends to the Glasshouse Mountains to show them where he dumped the body.

Defence barrister Angus Edwards said the confession was fake, that Mr Cowan had a $100,000 windfall at stake and believed he could secure an alibi if he admitted he did it.

Mr Edwards said people made fake confessions in high-profile crimes often, pointed to another person of interest in the police case and suggested there were other ways Mr Cowan could have known where Daniel's remains were.

He asked the jury to pay attention to evidence relating to Douglas Jackway - who had been released from jail a month prior to Daniel's disappearance after serving eight years for snatching a young boy to rape him.

Jury instructed on murder conviction for Morcombe trial

Mr Edwards said Jackway had a blue car, which many witnesses would say they saw near Daniel about the time he disappeared, and he was supposed to be on the Sunshine Coast that day.

He said his client made repeated denials about his involvement until he realised he "would be dropped out of gang".

"That meant no $100,000 and no alibi. It's only after that that that he confessed," he said.

Topics:  brett peter cowan daniel morcombe editors picks murder trial



"Eco-cretins" sabotage shark nets, risk swimmers' lives

A blacktip shark caught in a shark net at the end of last year.

Since 2015, there have been 22 shark attacks in New South Wales.

Best hotel in the world found in Cabarita

FIRST CLASS: Cabarita Beach's Halcyon House has taken out the top gong for best hotel in the world.

Halcyon House named best hotel.

Driver gets jail after pursuit ends in flames on the M1

YOU'RE FIRED: A car burns on Pacific Motorway at Wooyung after police deployed road spikes to end a pursuit that began at South Grafton.

Jail time for teen who led police on car chase.

Local Partners

50 Shades actress on why she hates the film

Dornan and Johnson’s frequent sex scenes were ‘awkward’ to film. Picture: SuppliedSource:Supplied

Jamie Dornan doesn’t blame you for hating 50 Shades

Chris Hemsworth’s X-rated compliment to former co-star

Australian actor Chris Hemsworth poses on the red carpet for the European premiere of the film 'Avengers: Age of Ultron' in London on April 21, 2015.

THOR star once paid former Home and Away actress a lewd compliment.

'I can't keep my mouth shut any longer'

Singer George Michael.

George Michael’s cousin blasts singer’s boyfriend Fadi Fawaz.

Fresh faces: NCIS gets a shake up with new cast members

The new cast of NCIS, from left, Rocky Carroll, Pauley Perrette, Sean Murray, David McCallum, Brian Dietzen, Wilmer Valderrama, Emily Wickersham, Mark Harmon, Duane Henry and Jennifer Esposito.

THREE new characters join naval drama for season 14.

First the Onesie, now an Xbox One S inflatable controller

Fancy an inflatable Xbox One S controller?

Inflatable controller 'perfect sidekick' for Australia Day party

Sarah Harris: Here’s what Amber Sherlock should’ve done

Studio 10 and Shark Tank presenter Sarah Harris.

STUDIO 10 host says Sherlock could’ve avoided the subsequent uproar.

Historical home leaves family's hands after 75 years

SALE CONFIRMED: The Gympie Regional   Realty team which sold the Ramsey property are (back) Mel Gastigar, Dorothy Palmer and Margaret Cochrane, with (front) home seller Terri-Jayne Ramsey.

Ramsey family played a huge role in Gympie's growth.

Pat Rafter's $18m Coast home proves hot property

PAT'S PAD: The Sunshine Beach home of tennis ace Pat rafter is on the market for a record price.

"It's a record for our company and for the Sunshine Coast.''

Ocean views of Coolangatta

1405/3 McLean Street, Coolangatta

Check out this week's feature property.

INTERACTIVE MAP: Which Northern Rivers towns boomed in 2016?

BOOM TOWNS: While Ballina properties continued to attract top dollar in 2016, it was areas to the south that experienced price hikes, including Wardell, Evans Head and Woodburn.

Click on our map to find the median sale price in your town

Expansion plan pays off

Mark Stapleton, Sharon Styman and Peter Ross from Investrent Property Management are going from strength to strength after opening an office in Murwillumbah.

Murwillumbah move a winner for property management team

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!