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Last Updated: Tuesday, 6 December 2005, 07:59 GMT
Falconio's body 'will be found'
Joanne Lees and Peter Falconio in their camper van
Peter Falconio's body has never been found
The parents of British backpacker Peter Falconio cried in court in Darwin, Australia, as the prosecutor said one day their son's body would be found.

Rex Wild, summing up for the prosecution, rejected suggestions from the defence that Mr Falconio faked his own death in the Australian outback.

Instead, he said, Mr Falconio was "disappeared by Bradley Murdoch".

Mr Murdoch denies murdering the Briton and kidnapping and attacking his girlfriend, Joanne Lees, in July 2001.

He is alleged to have shot dead Mr Falconio, 28, from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, after flagging down the couple's camper van on a remote stretch of highway, 200 miles north of Alice Springs.

'Cannabis trucker'

Director of public prosecutions Mr Wild told the Northern Territory Supreme Court Mr Murdoch was a "big, strong man" with strong opinions.

He said he was an experienced truck driver who took amphetamines to stay alert whilst transporting cannabis from South to Western Australia.

Corruption, conspiracy, this innuendo running through the case, there is not one bit of evidence to support it
Rex Wild QC
Director of Public Prosecutions

Mr Murdoch, he said, carried guns with him on journeys and cared more for his dog Jack than he did for other people.

He also told the court there was no evidence to support defence claims Mr Murdoch, 47, was framed.

If the police had wanted to fit him up they would have made the evidence stronger, he said.

Mr Wild said: "Corruption, conspiracy, this innuendo running through the case, there is not one bit of evidence to support it.

"Every time it's been put in this case, it's been denied."

As there was no evidence of corruption, the claims could be disregarded, he added.

'Shifting sands'

Earlier, Grant Algie, defending, highlighted how the evidence of some prosecution witnesses had changed over the course of the four years since the attack.

He said the prosecution's star witness Ms Lees had been confused about how she was forced into the rear of her attacker's vehicle and that she had changed her description of the vehicle.

Bradley Murdoch
Under cross-examination, Mr Murdoch denied killing Mr Falconio

"Is it good enough, when you are told to deliberate on a man for murder, to accept the shifting sands of the description of the man's vehicle?" he said.

"Four years down the track, when my client's on trial for murder, we hear, 'I'm not sure, I can't be sure any more'."

Closing the defence's argument, he said: "Guilty, members of the jury, is a verdict that carries with it a degree of absolute certainty.

"It says Brad Murdoch is a murderer. He killed Peter Falconio and you are satisfied of that beyond a reasonable doubt."

But not guilty, he told the jury, did not mean you thought Joanne Lees was a liar or that Mr Falconio was alive.

"It can simply mean that while something happened at Barrow Creek, you're not sure what it was," Mr Algie concluded.


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