A mother-of-four was stabbed and bashed to death after being lured by a fake drug deal, a murder trial heard today.
Prosecutor Linda Petrusa told the Supreme Court jury in the joint trial of Bradley Wayne Harvey and Michael Adam Kurdziel that Nicolle Bates had been suffering issues with drugs when she was killed by her ex-partner Mr Harvey.
Ms Petrusa told the jury the relationship between the pair had over time deteriorated and culminated in threatening texts being sent by Mr Harvey who believed Ms Bates owed him money.
It is alleged Mr Kurdziel lured her to his Westminster home on February 28 last year on the understanding she would be beaten by Mr Harvey and have drugs stolen from her.
Mr Harvey has pleaded not guilty to murder while Mr Kurdziel is fighting charges of grievous bodily harm and being accessory to murder.
After missing for 18 days her body had been found buried in Gnangara pine plantation so decomposed that it was still unknown precisely what caused her death.
"But we know enough," Ms Petrusa said. "She had been hacked, stabbed and repeatedly struck in the head."
While Mr Kurdziel initially denied to police seeing Ms Bates the day of her disappearance, he changed his story after being shown phone records.
He then gave an account of Mr Harvey aggressively requesting he lure Ms Bates to his home to "make her pay" and "teach her a lesson".
He said Mr Harvey had struck her with a mallet and stabbed her, still attacking her while she was on the ground.
Ms Petrusa said Mr Kurdziel claimed Mr Harvey had left and then returned with a car and used a yellow tarp to wrap Ms Bates’s body and take it away.