Brother gets four years jail

THE BROTHER of the man accused of murdering a well-known Byron Bay businessman in 2010 at Lennox Head has been sentenced to four years' jail for being an accessory to the killing.

Warren Purtill pleaded guilty to being an accessory after the fact to the February 8, 2010, murder of John "Jack" Garda at Kevin Purtill's Lennox Head home.

The court heard Lilly Richardson, a neighbour who lived in a granny flat below the house, heard Kevin Purtill yelling "you f****** c***" several times before she heard a loud thud.

This was followed by the sound of a person crying out in pain.

Warren Purtill was watching DVDs with Ms Richardson when this happened and when he went to investigate he discovered the body of Mr Garda lying on his brother's kitchen floor with a large cut to his neck.

The court heard a short time later Ms Richardson noticed blood dripping from the ceiling of the flat.

After talking to his brother for a few hours, Warren Purtill removed Mr Garda's car keys from his shorts and drove to South Ballina.

He caught a taxi back to his brother's home, stopping on the way to pick up a swag to wrap Mr Garda's body.

Warren and Kevin loaded the body into Warren's ute and drove to a location 3km south of Broadwater where they buried the body in a shallow grave.

In the days after the murder, Warren used Mr Garda's credit cards to buy a surfboard and alcohol, leading to a fraud charge.

At Lismore Supreme Court on Monday, Judge Harrison sentenced Purtill to four years' jail with a three-year non-parole period.


HOME AND HOSED: 20 new firefighters for our region

Premium Content HOME AND HOSED: 20 new firefighters for our region

Find out if your town or suburb is set to get a new firefighter in your station

FIVE new tracks from Northern Rivers’ musos you need to hear

Premium Content FIVE new tracks from Northern Rivers’ musos you need to hear

Check out five of the best and newest singles from Northern Rivers musicians this...

War rifle, game console stolen during alleged crime spree

Premium Content War rifle, game console stolen during alleged crime spree

Evans Head man charged over the thefts has faced court