Accused Spear Creek triple murderer granted bail
ACCUSED 1978 Spear Creek triple murderer Bruce Preston has been released on Supreme Court bail this morning.
The 64-year-old was released after his lawyers told a bail hearing the case against him was "weak".
It was the second bail attempt made by Preston.
Pretson, who will live at his home in Goulburn, will have to report to police three times a week and has a curfew between 9pm and 5am. He will also surrender his passport.
Karen Edwards, her boyfriend Timothy Thomson and their friend Gordon Twaddle were gunned down in the bush at Spear Creek, outside Mount Isa, in 1978 - just days into a motorbike road trip around Australia. Their bodies were found two weeks later.
The case was reviewed last year by the Homicide Investigation Unit's cold case team, leading to Preston's arrest. Police will allege the three friends met Preston on the road between Alice Springs and Mount Isa in early October.
Preston was on his own motorbike road trip, travelling home to Mount Isa from interstate. They allege Preston befriended Karen, 23, Tim, 31, and Gordon, 21, on the road and visited them at the Lake Moondarra Caravan Park in his hometown on the night of October 4, borrowing his father's Toyota LandCruiser.
They say Preston, a motorbike enthusiast, returned the following morning in his father's car to take the friends sightseeing, but instead lured them into the bush and killed them in order to steal Tim's valuable bike. Preston was discovered with Tim's bike two weeks later and told police he'd found it abandoned on the side of the road.
Preston's lawyer, Russell Pearce, argued for bail because new material included a report where a police officer "eliminated" him from the investigation back in 1980.
Justice Peter Davis said the opinion of one police officer decades earlier was "irrelevant".
Mr Pearce went on to argue police could not prove it was Preston who arrived in the LandCruiser to meet the friends.