Police receive court papers


POLICE have recovered a box of prosecution material from the Opit "Cezanne" art theft case allegedly found at the Murwillumbah tip last week.

Acting crime manager for Tweed Police Det Sgt Laurie Maroney said yesterday the box of material was handed into the Murwillumbah station on Saturday afternoon.

Det Sgt Maroney said the person who came to the station to hand in the material was helping police with their inquiries but would not disclose if it was the same person who had found the material at the tip or who had originally contacted the Daily News about the find.

An anonymous caller phoned the Daily News Murwillumbah office on Friday claiming they had found the box, with the mailing address of the Crown Solicitor in Lismore, while scavenging at the Palmvale Road tip.

The caller refused to give a name or say what they wished to do with the material, which they claimed included witness and victim statements and photographs relating to the case which opened in Lismore Court earlier that week.

Det Sgt Maroney said police would now investigate how the material allegedly came to be at the tip after it had been posted to Lismore.

"The material was mailed to Lismore on Monday, April 11 at Murwillumbah," he said.

"Police became aware the documents had been allegedly found at the tip on April 15 and they were returned on April 16."

Det Sgt Maroney said the investigation would include interviews with staff of the Murwillumbah post office.

John Opit said he was pleased the material had been recovered and handed safely back to police so as not to compromise the ongoing court case.

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