Rambo film no de­fence for mur­der

Shepparton News - - NATIONALNEWS -

MEL­BOURNE: A Mel­bourne man who in­sists he was watch­ing a Rambo film when his mate was killed main­tains his in­no­cence de­spite a jury find­ing him guilty of mur­der.

Christo­pher John Lav­ery, 31, was in Au­gust found guilty of mur­der­ing James Rus­souw in March 2008.

The 24-year-old was stabbed in the neck and set alight inside his Jeep at a sub­ur­ban Bur­wood East sports ground.

A Supreme Court jury re­jected Lav­ery’s claim he was at the cin­ema, find­ing he killed and robbed his friend to help fund a gam­bling debt.

Dur­ing the four-week trial, Lav­ery said a ‘‘dirty rat’’ falsely dobbed him in af­ter Vic­to­ria Po­lice ad­ver­tised a $1 mil­lion re­ward for in­for­ma­tion lead­ing to a con­vic­tion.

Pros­e­cu­tors say Lav­ery tar­geted Mr Rus­souw be­cause he was car­ry­ing a large amount of cash that night. Jus­tice Wein­berg said he would con­sider his sen­tence for at least a week.

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