A man found guilty of murdering Deniliquin woman Janet Fisicaro has appealed to have his conviction overturned.ZOE MCMAUGH May 23, 2014 4:00am
Former Deniliquin paramedic and convicted killer Des Campbell faced the Court of Criminal Appeals in Sydney on Wednesday in an attempt to have his 2010 conviction overturned.
Campbell was found guilty of pushing his new wife, Deniliquin woman Janet Fisicaro, off a 50m cliff on a camping trip in 2005.
His lawyers will argue that a key crown witness, retired physics professor Rod Cross, did not have the ‘‘relevant expertise’’ to give evidence at the original trial which dismissed the possibility that Ms Fisicaro had tripped and fell from the cliff.
Barrister April Francis said Prof Cross was a ‘‘voice for the crown’’ rather than an independent expert witness, the ABC reported.
Prof Cross had explained to the NSW Supreme Court that Janet’s footprint at the edge of the cliff demonstrated she was in a standing position when she went over the edge and that she must have been pushed from behind.
Prof Cross was also a key crown witness in the 1995 trial of Gordon Wood, who was found guilty of murdering his girlfriend. Mr Wood’s conviction was quashed on appeal in 2012 and he walked free from jail.
Detective Sergeant Shannon Spargo, who was part of the team to investigate Ms Fisicaro’s death, attended Campbell’s appeal hearing.
‘‘It was a full-day hearing which has now been held over to a date yet to be fixed — it could be two weeks or two months, we don’t know,’’ Det Sgt Spargo said.
‘‘The decision has to be made whether the appeal will be allowed. The options are there could be an appeal, a re-trial or an acquittal.’’
Campbell lodged the appeal against the conviction in August 2012, however it wasn’t until this week that he and his lawyers were able to front a three-judge appeal panel.
It was 2004 when Campbell wed Ms Fisicaro in secret, and the fateful Easter camping trip in the Royal National Park followed in 2005.
The pair met when Campbell was a NSW Ambulance paramedic in Deniliquin.
Campbell has always maintained his innocence, saying Janet left the tent in the middle of the night and he did not realise she had not returned until morning.
During the four-week trial in 2010 the jury heard that Campbell had not attended his wife’s funeral.
They also heard he holidayed with one of three girlfriends he had during the marriage a week after his wife’s death, and that he married his fourth wife, who he met on a Filipino dating site, in January 2006.
Campbell is currently serving a minimum 24-year sentence in Goulburn jail.
Hafizullah Mohaqiq was born in Afghanistan, spent periods living in Pakistan and Iran, before arriving in Shepparton two months ago.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The Fairley Leadership Program met in Tatura on Wednesday, exploring ‘Water and our catchment’ at Goulburn Murray Water.
Road authorities have made little progress to fixing Echuca’s most dangerous intersections.
Lockington Vintage Tractor and Stationary Engine Rally is on for the 18th time this weekend and there is something for everyone.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
A visit by Coliban Water to Heathcote last week provided residents with a chance to quiz staff about water and sewer services.
A new book, Men from the River Bends, honours Cobram-Barooga and district soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice after enlisting in World War 1.
Deniliquin bowler Dennis O'Keefe lost 25-19 in his bid for a quarter-final spot in the Victorian Singles Championships this week.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
Discover unbelievable local deals from local businesses every week in the Goulburn and Murray Valley area with Leapon.com.au!
Search properties for sale or rent across North Central Victoria and Southern NSW. Visit your local website for local homes....
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.