Page last updated at 15:05 GMT, Tuesday, 28 July 2009 16:05 UK

Accused couple 'in it together'

John Wilson and Lisa Brown
John Wilson and Lisa Brown have blamed each other for the murder

The jury in the trial of a couple accused of killing the woman's mother and dumping her body in a burn has been told the pair were in it together.

John Wilson, 25, and Lisa Brown, 21, both deny murdering Anne Brown at her home in Ayrshire last October and have blamed each other.

In his closing speech, advocate depute Gary Allan QC said the case against them was circumstantial.

But he said the evidence was sufficient in "quantity and quality" to convict.

The prosecutor told the High Court in Glasgow that the case began as a missing persons inquiry and very quickly culminated in the discovery of Anne Brown's body wrapped up and dumped in the water of an Ayrshire burn.

He told the jury her body was in such a poor state it could not even be identified by her own brother.

He said it was the Crown's contention that the pair had "a common criminal plan."

"They were in it together," he said.

The brutal bludgeoning to death must chill the blood of any decent person
Gary Allan QC
Advocate depute

He reminded the jury of Lisa Brown and Anne Brown's "volatile" mother-daughter relationship, especially with regards to Lisa Brown's son.

He said both the accused had agreed to go to Anne Brown's house in the dark to achieve the removal of the child by any means possible, including "lethal violence".

The advocate depute described it as a "surprise assault".

He told the jury the pair's account to police that they had found the child alone the night they allegedly murdered Mrs Brown was "astonishingly unlikely."

He then questioned why the couple had never reported former nurse Anne Brown missing.

The prosecutor told the court this was because they knew exactly what had happened, and because they had orchestrated it.

'Overwhelming evidence'

One of the accused, John Wilson, had earlier told the trial that it was Lisa Brown who killed her mother and he had helped dispose of the body.

Mr Allan QC told the jury that they must consider Mr Wilson's evidence as they would all other witnesses but he added: "John Wilson's evidence is clearly riddled with lies. He has told you that himself."

He went on: "John Wilson only speaks out now when he is faced with an overwhelming body of evidence. Only now when staring into the abyss of a conviction for murder does he say he is telling the truth."

Mr Allan concluded that Lisa Brown had shown a "betrayal and calculated disregard of human life".

"That she should involve a man who is so weak increases, not lessens, her culpability.

"But, John Wilson remains responsible for his actions, " he said.

Anne Brown
Police found Mrs Brown's body during searches in Ayrshire

The prosecutor added: "The bond between mum and child is perhaps the strongest. You may feel in this terrible tragedy that bond has been despicably betrayed and corrupted.

"The brutal bludgeoning to death must chill the blood of any decent person."

Anne Brown's body was found in Clerkland Burn in North Ayrshire last October.

It is claimed Lisa Brown and Mr Wilson struck Anne Brown on the head and body with a blunt object or objects and that her daughter had previously "evinced malice and ill-will towards her".

Lisa Brown and Mr Wilson are then alleged to have attempted to defeat the ends of justice by disposing of her body in the burn.

They are also accused of washing a quantity of bloodstained clothing which they wore at the time of the alleged attack.

Closing speeches in trial, before Judge Lord Matthews, will continue on Wednesday.



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