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Sunday, April 17, 2011

Kelly Lane Found Guilty

Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi


On Friday, Keli Lane was sentenced to 18 years with a non-parole period is 13 years and five months for the murder of her baby daughter Tegan. She will be eligible for release on parole on May 12, 2023.

Keli Lane's situation reminds me a bit of the Lindy Chamberlain case - she too was charged with the murder of her baby Azaria even though her body was never found. I had a gut feeling about Lindy and have the same gut feeling about Keli Lane - without a body or any other evidence, there should be 'reasonable doubt'.



Keli Lane with her parents




In the space of a few hours on the afternoon of the 14th September 1996, 21 year old Keli parted company with her daughter Tegan. That's it, there is no other evidence - no sightings, no DNA, no fingerprints, no pieces of fabric, no body. Nothing.



Des Campbell


Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi built his case around the lies that Lane had told, and there were many, and also the fact that the police search for the father proved unsuccessful. Justice Anthony Whealy warned the jury they must take into account that telling lots of lies does not make you a murderer.



Gordon Wood




Mark Tedeschi must be one of the most successful prosecutors in the country. He was responsible for the guilty verdict of Gordon Wood, the man who threw his girlfriend off the Gap and also Des Campbell, the man who took his wife camping and said she accidently fell off a cliff in the dark.



Caren Jenning


Prosecutor Tedeschi was also the prosecutor in the euthanasia case of Qantas pilot Graeme Wylie. Caren Jenning went to Mexico to get the deadly drug that was used in his death. Wylie said he wanted to die but Tedeschi wasn't having it, he was determined to have Graeme Wylie's wife and Caren Jenning both found guilty of manslaughter. Suffering from cancer, a month before she was due to face a sentencing hearing, Jenning took her own life. She left a suicide note and accused Tedeschi of harassment. "During the trial, I felt persecuted and harassed by Crown prosecutor Mark Tedeschi," she wrote. "He is a bully boy."

Keli Lane gave two babies up for adoption and has been a loving mother to the daughter she decided to keep and raise. These are not the actions of a murderer. And there is one thing that Mark Tedeschi could not prove - that Tegan is dead - and how the jury came to a unanimous decision of guilt leaves me baffled. Thank goodness we have an appeal system.