Mayhem and murder after planned attack, Crown says

Kieren Pye died in 2015. He was 23.
Kieren Pye died in 2015. He was 23.

"LESS than six minutes” separated a phone call about a drug deal and the 000 call Kieren Pye's girlfriend made after a fatal late night encounter, a court has heard.

Mr Pye died in Ipswich on April 2, 2015 after a frenzied but planned assault on him and his mate Peter Bell, a Crown prosecutor said.

But barristers for men accused of murdering Mr Pye urged jurors to carefully scrutinise the evidence of a third man involved in the fatal Carole Park encounter.

The court heard that third man, whose name has been suppressed, approached Mr Bell in a car and fought with him over car keys as the mayhem erupted.

The third man's testimony painted a picture of a chaotic, bloody encounter - but one in which he saved Mr Pye's girlfriend, Renae Grove.

He told Brisbane Supreme Court Mr Sauaga ripped Mr Pye out the car and Mr Lemaga "had a knife raised”.

Closing the defence case on Monday, Mr Lemaga's barrister Andrew Hoare argued the third man's "self-aggrandising” evidence was not credible.

Mr Hoare said Mr Lemaga behaved in a calming manner, soothing Ms Grove after Mr Pye was injured.

He said this was inconsistent with the actions of a man who'd just been incredibly violent.

"He must regret being there. He must regret what happened,” Mr Hoare said of his client.

But that did not mean Mr Lemaga was guilty, he said.

In fact, Mr Lemaga "said he froze” and "didn't know what to do”

Prosecutor Vicki Loury said someone using Mr Sauaga's phone called Mr Bell at 2.37am.

At 2.43am, Ms Grove called 000.

"It's a very small window that these events occurred in - less than six minutes,” Ms Loury said.

She said Mr Lemaga, Mr Sauaga and the third man planned an attack "designed to achieve the maximum threat” after scheming to rob Mr Bell.

Ms Loury said "not one shred of evidence” existed to suggest Mr Pye had a weapon that night, but Mr Sauaga had a machete.

Mr Sauaga's barrister Chris Wilson said "it would be virtually impossible to attribute a specific intent to anyone.”

He said his client was probably thinking "I need to protect myself” as opposed to "I've got to kill this man”.

He said Mr Pye "got at least got one punch in” and was a man "certainly capable of violence”.

He said Mr Pye was on a big, "toxic” dose of drugs at the time.

Justice Debra Mullins began summing up the case on Monday, telling jurors she would likely continue on Tuesday.


Topics:  brisbane court carole park ipswich crime jury trial kieren pye murder trial

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