Friday, 25 July 2008

10 years for 'gullible' bodies-in-barrels

A man who helped kidnap a New South Wales south coast couple, whose bodies were later found burning in barrels, has been sentenced to 10 years in jail.

The bodies of Gregory Hosa and Kathryn McKay were found in smouldering barrels in the Tomerong State Forest, near Nowra, in January 2006.

Thirty-three-year-old Andrew Wayne Flentjar was accused of assisting Kim Leanne Snibson and Stacey Lea Caton in the couple's abduction and murder.

They were bound and gagged before being suffocated and put into 44-gallon drums.

Flentjar pleaded guilty to kidnapping but was found not guilty of their murder.

He said held the couple down while they were tied up but played no role in strangling them and putting their bodies in barrels.

During the trial, Flentjar's barrister, John Stratton QC, told the jury Snibson was the face of evil, who recruited Flentjar because he was gullible.

Mr Stratton said Flentjar was not told of plans to kill the victims and was not even aware the couple had been killed until he heard it in the media.

In sentencing, Justice Terrence Buddin said while Flentjar's role was not a major one, it was still important as he had helped detain the couple before their murders.

Flentjar will be eligible for parole in 2013.

Caton is serving 22 years for the murders while Snibson, who changed her plea to guilty during the trial, is still waiting to be sentenced.

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