Court docket hears wheelie bin homicide sufferer Dinh Lam Nguyen was stabbed 28 occasions over ‘drug debt’

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A 51-year-old man, whose physique was discovered wrapped in pink plastic inside a wheelie bin that was floating in a dam, was repeatedly stabbed after pleading to be repaid a debt of some thousand {dollars}, the WA Supreme Court docket has been informed.

The element got here at the beginning of the trial of Todd Nathan Kiernan, 29, and Gervaise Sakib Geoffrey Widdowson, 31, who’re accused of murdering Dinh Lam Nguyen on the night of January 20 final yr.

The court docket was informed Mr Kiernan owed cash to Mr Nguyen, believed to be about $4000, which Mr Nguyen was pleading to be paid as a result of he was in monetary difficulties and struggling to pay the lease.

State prosecutor Justin Whalley SC stated an association was then made for Mr Nguyen to go to Mr Kiernan’s dwelling in Mahogany Creek to gather among the cash.

Nonetheless, Mr Whalley alleged Mr Kiernan “had no intention of something and as a substitute determined to homicide Mr Nguyen”.

“That seemed to be his debt compensation technique,” Mr Whalley stated.

“The preferable course could be merely kill the predator and clear the debt that approach.”

Police scoured John Forrest Nationwide Park in Perth’s east for clues.(ABC Information)

The court docket heard Mr Kiernan organized for his buddy, Mr Widdowson, to be current on the home to assist with the killing, which occurred after Mr Nguyen was invited in.

Mr Whalley stated a autopsy examination revealed Mr Nguyen suffered 28 stab wounds, together with 17 wounds to his again.

After the killing, Mr Whalley stated the lads drove Mr Nguyen’s automotive to a close-by pine plantation the place they set it alight.

An aerial image of a burnt out car
The lads admit to setting hearth to Mr Nguyen’s automotive, however they deny murdering him.(ABC Information)

It’s alleged they then returned to Mr Kiernan’s dwelling the place Mr Nguyen’s physique was wrapped in pink plastic that seemed to be from a mattress that had been delivered to the property.

Physique wrapped in plastic that had accused’s identify on it

The physique was then put inside a wheelie bin and within the early hours of the morning allegedly transported in Mr Kiernan’s car to the Glen Brook Dam within the John Forrest Nationwide Park.

Mr Whalley stated the bin was weighed down with a bag of cement and a log however “regardless of the perfect efforts” of the accused males, it floated to the floor.

Police pull a wheelie bin out of a dam
Police retrieved the wheelie bin containing Mr Nguyen’s physique after it was found by members of the general public. (ABC Information)

It was first seen by a member of the general public hours later, nevertheless it wasn’t till 4 days later {that a} 15-year-old boy seemed intently at it and recognised human physique components.

The court docket heard police have been led to Mr Kiernan by a label on the plastic used to wrap Mr Nguyen’s physique, that had his identify on it, in addition to a torn-up letter within the wheelie bin that had been despatched to him.

Mr Widdowson was arrested after police obtained details about his alleged involvement.

Mr Whalley stated Mr Widdowson took half in a video-recorded interview through which he admitted he was current when Mr Nguyen was killed.

Nonetheless, he maintained he believed he was there solely to intimidate and rob the 51-year-old and he didn’t know Mr Kiernan had meant to kill him.

Mr Whalley stated it was the prosecution case that whereas Mr Kiernan was the one that carried out the stabbing, Mr Widdowson aided the alleged homicide and helped to attempt to cowl it up.

A wide shot of Glen Brook Dam
Glen Brook Dam is positioned about 30km east of Perth.(ABC Information)

Whereas each males have admitted setting hearth to Mr Nguyen’s automotive, they deny murdering him.

Accused acted in ‘self defence’

In a gap tackle to the jury, Mr Kiernan’s lawyer Elizabeth Needham stated her consumer’s debt to Mr Nguyen, which was alleged to be drug-related, was not denied.

Nonetheless, she stated he didn’t admit having a plan to kill Mr Nguyen, suggesting as a substitute that her consumer had acted in self-defence.

“I anticipate I might be asking you … to contemplate that in the middle of an argument that changed into a combat, a ferocious combat between Mr Nguyen and Mr Kiernan, that his actions have been these, in a protracted combat, to cease Mr Nguyen inflicting severe hurt or killing him,” she stated.

“… And I additionally anticipate … that from Mr Kiernan’s perspective, the explanation he had Mr Widdowson there was solely to make sure that Mr Nguyen didn’t harm or kill Mr Kiernan as a result of he feared him.”

An aerial view of John Forrest National Park
Mr Nguyen’s physique was present in John Forrest Nationwide Park in Hovea, east of Perth.  (ABC Information)

Ms Needham additionally stated the alleged cowl up, together with the disposal of the physique, could have simply been two males, frightened by what had occurred, and never proof of a plan.

On behalf of Mr Widdowson, his lawyer Tony Hager informed the court docket whereas his consumer admitted serving to eliminate the physique and setting hearth to Mr Nguyen’s automotive, he didn’t help Mr Kiernan in any alleged violence.

“The violence Mr Kiernan was chargeable for … in case you discover him accountable … he was chargeable for alone. It was by no means contemplated by Mr Widdowson forward of time.”

Teen and mate found physique

Later an announcement was learn to the court docket from {the teenager} who found the physique within the bin.

He stated he was with a buddy on the time and after seeing the bin within the dam, they joked that there could also be a lifeless physique inside as a result of they’d simply accomplished a biology unit at college, which had concerned observing three lifeless chickens.

{The teenager} stated that as he was strolling nearer to the bin, he may odor one thing much like decomposing chickens and his buddy then stated he may see a foot.

The assertion stated {the teenager} took a better look and noticed a foot protruding of the highest of the bin with 5 toes after which a leg that was related to it.

{The teenager} stated they then alerted one other particular person they have been with, who at first thought they have been joking, however then known as the police.

The trial is about down for 2 weeks.

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