Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Susan Neill-Fraser Appeal on murder conviction set for March 2020: (Wrongful Convictions Report reports):

STORY: "Sue Neill-Fraser appeal set for March 2020," reported by Andrew L. Urban on his Blog 'Wrongful Conviction Report',  which is devoted to exploring and exposing miscarriages of justice.
on November 13, 2019.

BACKGROUND: (Australian Associated Press):   The Guardian (March 22, 2019): (The daughter of convicted killer Susan Neill-Fraser has described a court decision to grant the Hobart grandmother the right to another appeal as “one step” in a very long journey. Neill-Fraser was convicted in 2010 of murdering Bob Chappell, 65, on Australia Day 2009 on the couple’s Four Winds yacht moored at Sandy Bay. Chappell’s body has never been located, and Neill-Fraser has maintained her innocence. On Thursday, the 65-year-old was granted leave in the Hobart supreme court to launch a fresh appeal against her murder conviction after a judge ruled there was “fresh and compelling” evidence in the case. Justice Michael Brett found that evidence about the whereabouts of the then homeless teenager Meaghan Vass on the night of the murder, and her DNA, satisfied criteria to grant an appeal. Vass’s DNA was found aboard the Four Winds yacht, but at the original trial she denied ever being on the boat. The appeal bid concluded in February but was reopened this month to consider an affidavit from Vass that came to light after her appearance on a 60 Minutes program about the case. Justice Brett said Vass’s affidavit, purportedly signed in February, stated that she was on the yacht the night of the murder with two male companions. “She witnessed at least one of the males assault Mr Chappell. She recalls seeing a lot of blood,” he added. Neill-Fraser smiled to family and supporters in a packed courtroom as the decision was delivered. Her daughter Sarah Bowles held back tears when speaking to reporters outside court. “This is just one step in the direction of what’s going to be a very long journey for us as a family,” she said. “She’s an innocent woman and it’s time she came home and was with her grandchildren to have cuddles.” Neill-Fraser was found guilty in 2010 of bludgeoning Chappell and dumping his body in the River Derwent. Several appeals against her conviction have failed. Justice Brett said he did not rule on the credibility of the evidence, only that it was “fresh and compelling”. Neill-Fraser was able to apply for another appeal under Tasmanian laws introduced in 2015."

PUBLISHER’S NOTE: I am monitoring this case/issue. Keep your eye on the Charles Smith Blog for reports on developments. The Toronto Star, my previous employer for more than twenty incredible years, has put considerable effort into exposing the harm caused by Dr. Charles Smith and his protectors - and into pushing for reform of Ontario's forensic pediatric pathology system. The Star has a "topic"  section which focuses on recent stories related to Dr. Charles Smith. It can be found at: http://www.thestar.com/topic/charlessmith. Information on "The Charles Smith Blog Award"- and its nomination process - can be found at: http://smithforensic.blogspot.com/2011/05/charles-smith-blog-award-nominations.html Please send any comments or information on other cases and issues of interest to the readers of this blog to: hlevy15@gmail.com.  Harold Levy: Publisher: The Charles Smith Blog;