Bundaberg man bailed over 2001 slaying
A BUNDABERG father of two can return to his family after three months behind bars for his alleged involvement in a cold case murder in the Gold Coast hinterland.
Shane Anthony Eric Hansen, 33, was granted bail in the Brisbane Supreme Court based on his mother providing a $300,000 surety on her Gold Coast home.
Hansen is one of three people charged with murdering Darren John Britza, 31, in an assault allegedly taken too far on March 23, 2001. Mr Britza's body was not found until fishermen unearthed a shallow grave at Boyland, in the Gold Coast Hinterland, after heavy rain in 2008.
Barrister Andrew Hoare said the Crown case was "a weak one", arguing the alleged connection could amount to accessary after the fact at most. He said his client, a carpenter who lived at Sharon with his wife and two children, owned a white Commodore station wagon which police could not prove was used to transport Mr Britza's body.
Mr Hoare said there were differences in the vehicle's description and one witness claimed he was drinking with Hansen at his home at the time of the alleged murder.
He said that witness claimed he later drove Hansen to get his car and helped hotwire it.
"There is no direct evidence. There is circumstantial evidence which includes confessional (statements) that are not consistent," he said. Legal officer Steven Dickson said the Crown objected to bail because the flight risk was too high.
It took police two months to identify Mr Britza because a missing persons report was never filed.
A badly damaged SIM card in the pocket of his jeans gave police the clues they needed.
Police charged former lovers Jade Marie Clarke and Dean Mark Willis in 2009 after a long police investigation.
They are expected to face a trial in the Brisbane Supreme Court but no date has been set yet.