Accused toolbox killers kept victims tied up for hours, witness tells court at double murder trial


A Supreme Court jury in Brisbane has heard gruesome evidence about the final hours of two people whose bodies were found locked in a toolbox and submerged in a dam south of Brisbane.

Iuliana Triscaru, 31, and Cory Breton, 28, were reported missing in late January 2016 and their bodies located 18 days after they were reported missing.

Waylon Walker, Stou Daniels and Davy Taiao pleaded not guilty to two counts of murder on the first day of their Supreme Court trial.

Trent Thrupp pleaded not guilty to two counts of murder but guilty to the lesser charges of manslaughter — but the crown did not accept his plea.

Mr Daniels, Mr Taiao and Mr Thrupp also pleaded not guilty to two counts of torture.

In evidence today, a childhood friend of Mr Breton’s, Lelan Harrington, told the court he was at the Kingston unit where it was alleged the pair were tied up and tortured.

Mr Harrington told the court Mr Breton and Ms Triscaru spent hours on a couch tied up with duct tape and zip ties, before being forced into a toolbox.

He said at one stage he saw Ms Triscaru trying to escape, but she was stopped when Mr Harrington said he raised the alarm.

“As I got to bottom of the stairs I saw Trent [Thrupp] standing over her [Iuliana Triscaru] [and] blood was coming from her mouth,” Mr Harrington told the court.

“She’s crying and trying to struggle and they rolled her onto her stomach.

“D-lock [Davy Taiao] came over with zip tie and put it around her neck.”

Lelan Harrington told the court he was at the Kingston unit where it was alleged the pair were tied up and tortured.(Supplied: QPS)

Mr Harrington told the court Ms Triscaru continued to struggle as one of the men tried to close the lid of the toolbox

“He starts slashing at her arms [with a knife] — I could hear banging on the toolbox,” he told the hearing.

Mr Harrington told the court he continued to hear kicking and screaming as the toolbox was put on the back of a ute parked in the garage.

“They almost dropped it … I tried to lift it and it was way too heavy for me,” he said.

Mr Harrington told the court two men drove the ute to a dam where it was submerged.

‘Begging for their lives’

He said he later asked Mr Thrupp about the pair’s final moments.

“He told me they were begging for their lives and that he shot them both in the head,” Mr Harrington told the court.

“He said the toolbox kept floating, so they used tyres and stones.”

Mr Harrington said Mr Thrupp also told him: “I don’t know why we had to do that to her [Ms Triscaru]. I broke the one rule my mother gave me and that was to never hurt a woman.”

Mr Harrington told the court he burnt the ute and then went into hiding at his uncle’s place.

He said he was tracked down by police while visiting his sister at Browns Plains.

“I just told them everything,” he said.

Mr Harrington said he was charged with deprivation of liberty and assault occasioning bodily harm, but served no time in prison.

In his opening address, crown prosecutor David Meredith said Ms Triscaru and Mr Breton died from either asphyxiation or drowning.

Mr Harrington will be cross-examined by the defence later today.

The trial is expected to run for four weeks.

Two policemen watch as a yellow crane truck lifts a metal box in grassland.
The bodies of Iuliana Triscaru and Cory Breton were found in the toolbox on February 11, 2016.(AAP: Dan Peled)



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Webbstar Latu sentenced to 12 years in jail over toolbox deaths



A man has been sentenced to 12 years in jail for his role in the deaths of two people whose bodies were found locked in a large metal toolbox and submerged in a dam south of Brisbane.

Iuliana Triscaru and Cory Breton’s bodies were discovered in February, 2016 at Kingston, more than two weeks after they were last seen alive.

Webbstar Latu, 36, was originally charged with two counts of murder but last week pleaded guilty to the lesser charges of manslaughter in the Supreme Court in Brisbane.

Latu is one of several people charged over the deaths following a police investigation.

The court heard in January, 2016 Ms Triscaru and Mr Breton were lured to a unit, tortured for hours, then forced into a toolbox.

The toolbox was then placed onto the back of a ute and driven to a lagoon at Kingston where it was submerged.

Justice David Boddice said he accepted Latu was not involved in bringing the victims to the unit or physically harming them, but that his offending was still “significant”.

“Whilst at that unit and whilst obviously aware that these people were being held against their will in circumstances, where they had sustained significant injuries, you were involved in, first of all, carrying a toolbox into the unit and subsequently carrying the toolbox out knowing that those two people had been placed into that toolbox,” Justice Boddice said.

“You also assisted the others involved in this despicable behaviour by cleaning up the unit and by driving one of the motor vehicles away.

“It should be noted however there is not a suggestion that you went to the lagoon or that you were involved in the final acts which led to the deaths of these two people.”

Defence barrister Stephen Kissick told the court his client had fallen out with his family prior to the offending and had been using drugs.

Latu, who has spent more than 1,700 days in custody, will have to serve at least 80 per cent of his sentence.



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EU countries told to develop best practices toolbox for fast telephony network



FILE PHOTO: An advertising board shows a 5G logo at the International Airport in Zaventem, Belgium May 4, 2020. REUTERS/Yves Herman

September 18, 2020

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Commission on Friday urged the 27-country bloc to come up with a best practices toolbox for rolling out fixed and mobile very high-capacity fibre and 5G networks aimed at helping Europe develop technology autonomy and boost economic growth.

The measures should cut the cost and increase the speed of deployment of very high capacity networks, provide timely access to 5G radio spectrum and allow for more cross-border coordination for radio spectrum allocations to support innovative 5G services, the EU executive said.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee)





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EU countries told to develop best practices toolbox for fast telephony network


September 18, 2020

BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Commission on Friday urged the 27-country bloc to come up with a best practices toolbox for rolling out fixed and mobile very high-capacity fibre and 5G networks aimed at helping Europe develop technology autonomy and boost economic growth.

The measures should cut the cost and increase the speed of deployment of very high capacity networks, provide timely access to 5G radio spectrum and allow for more cross-border coordination for radio spectrum allocations to support innovative 5G services, the EU executive said.

(Reporting by Foo Yun Chee)





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Toolbox killings accused jailed as serious offender after manslaughter guilty plea


A man has been sentenced to 13 years’ jail for his role in the deaths of two people whose bodies were found stuffed in a large metal toolbox that was dumped in a dam south of Brisbane.

Iuliana Triscaru and Cory Breton’s bodies were discovered in February 2016, 18 days after they were last seen alive.

Tepuna Tupuna Mariri, 29, was originally charged with two counts of murder but today pleaded guilty to the lesser charges of manslaughter, which was accepted by the crown.

He also admitted to torture.

The Supreme Court in Brisbane heard Mariri instructed others to close the windows to drown out the victim’s cries while they were being tortured and later tried “to distract neighbours who were worried about noises” coming from within the toolbox.

Justice David Boddice labelled the ordeal “sustained and brutal” and told Mariri his conduct had caused “indescribable grief” to the victims’ families.

“While you did not intend them to die, their deaths were a probable consequence.”

Crown prosecutor Dejana Kovac told the court Mariri was one of eight people charged over the deaths following a police investigation.

The bodies of Iuliana Triscaru, 31, and Cory Breton, 28, were found inside a large toolbox submerged in a dam.(Supplied: Queensland Police Service)

The court heard the victims were lured to a unit at Kingston, south of Brisbane, where they were assaulted and tortured for hours before they were forced into the large metal toolbox.

Rubbish and personal items were tossed inside the toolbox with Ms Triscaru and Mr Breton.

The court heard Mariri was among those who sat on the container to keep the victims inside.

The victims’ decomposing bodies were later found inside the toolbox, which had been submerged in a dam.

Ms Kovac said it was likely they died of suffocation or drowning.

Two policemen watch as a yellow crane truck lifts a black box in grassland
Police had to use a crane to retrieve the toolbox after it was discovered at Kingston.(AAP: Dan Peled)

Mariri’s defence barrister Tim Ryan said his client did not inflict physical harm on the victims during the torture and his “most direct involvement” was sitting on top of the box with others.

But Justice Boddice replied: “If a person is screaming in pain, even if you’re not the one inflicting the pain, the idea that you would instruct somebody to shut the windows so people can’t hear it suggests you are actively involved in this.”

‘You did this to her’

Mr Ryan said his client was susceptible to making poor decisions “not only because of the extent of his continued drug use, but there seems to be a misplaced sense of loyalty to others”.

Emotional victim impact statements were read aloud at the sentencing hearing.

Ms Triscaru’s mother wrote: “I wonder if she cried for me? I miss her so much.

“You did this to her. You did this to all of us.”

Justice Boddice took into account factors including Mariri’s pleas of guilty and the sentence imposed on a co-offender.

Mariri, who has spent more than 1,600 days in pre-sentence custody, will have to serve 80 per cent of his sentence under a serious violent offender declaration.



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