LAWYERS for the man convicted of the brutal murder of Carly McBride say he should be acquitted or a new trial ordered due to what they say were errors made by the judge, including not allowing the defence to explore an alleged "financial motive" of a key witness.
The jury was left with no doubt he was the person who intercepted the 31-year-old after she left a visit with her daughter at Muswellbrook on September 30, 2014, and inflicted a number of blows to her head and back before dumping her body near the side of a lonely stretch of road outside Scone.
Ms McBride's skeletal remains were not found until August, 2016.
Newson, who had been in a brief relationship with Ms McBride at the time of her murder, was later jailed for a maximum of 27 years, with a non-parole period of 19 years and nine months, making him eligible for parole in August 2038.
As soon as the guilty verdict was read, Newson protested his innocence, telling the jury: "Youse have got it wrong (sic). I'm innocent. I didn't do it."
Newson's lawyers, led by Sydney barrister Winston Terracini, SC, and Newcastle solicitor Mark Ramsland, filed a notice of intention to appeal the conviction as far back as 2021.
The Newcastle Herald can reveal Newson's legal team have now filed the all grounds appeal and submissions, listing eight grounds of appeal that argue Newson's conviction should be overturned and that his sentence was manifestly excessive.
The grounds of appeal include that the trial judge, Justice Mark Ierace, SC, erred in a number of ways, including not admitting tendency evidence, not giving the jury a dedicated inferences direction in a "purely circumstantial case", not leaving manslaughter to the jury in the alternative to murder and not allowing the defence to cross-examine a key witness about what they claim was "dishonest conduct".
On the defence case at trial, that key witness was the last person to see Ms McBride alive.
Newson's lawyers said they were restricted from cross-examining that witness about what they said were "dishonest" dealings with Centrelink that the defence say could have provided a "financial motive" for killing Ms McBride.
The final ground of appeal against Newson's conviction is that the verdict is unreasonable or cannot be supported having regard to the evidence.
As well as the conviction appeal, Newson's lawyers filed an appeal against the severity of his maximum 27-year sentence and say Justice Ierace erred in determining Newson intended to kill Ms McBride in light of the prosecution relying only upon an intention to cause grievous bodily harm.
They also say the judge made an error when assessing the "objective seriousness" of the murder and that the sentence is manifestly excessive.
The injuries inflicted by the offender were extreme, bespeaking an attack of unrestrained brutality- Justice Ierace, in his judgement in 2021
As part of Justice Ierace's judgment in December, 2021, he found that the brutal and unplanned attack on Ms McBride was motivated by Newson's jealousy after he picked her up from her ex-partner's house and discovered that, although he had dropped her off to visit her daughter, she had instead spent about 90 minutes with her ex-partner.
He found that the discovery that Ms McBride's daughter had not been at the home in Calgaroo Avenue came in the context of a number of days that had "excited his jealousy" and culminated in Newson "striking her in a jealous rage".
Justice Iearce also found that, due to Newson's history as a professional Muay Thai fighter and Ms McBride's slight frame, Newson must have intended to kill Ms McBride when he landed a number of blows that caused 23 fractures to her skull and 13 fractures to her back.
"The injuries inflicted by the offender were extreme, bespeaking an attack of unrestrained brutality," Justice Ierace said.
"It is inconceivable that he could hit her head with the force required to cause 23 skull and facial fractures without him being aware of the inevitable consequence.
"I am satisfied that his intent in that moment was to cause her death."
The appeal is currently listed on June 1 for callover to get a hearing date in the Court of Criminal Appeal.
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