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DAY one of the Jayde Kendall murder trial has wrapped up after the jury heard evidence from the 16-year-old’s father and brother.

Bruce Morrissey described his daughter as a quiet girl who was “determined to do her studies”.

“… She was very conscientious. She would always, always dedicate herself to her studies,” he said.

He said the teenager worked at McDonald’s since 2014 and was paying him every week “without fail” after he helped her buy a new car.

But he said she suffered from anxiety in 2013, which involved some self harm.

“She had cut herself a couple of times. I asked her about it and she did show me they were just like, scratches,” he said.

Mr Morrissey told how he sent Jayde two text messages while he waited outside McDonald’s for her to finish her shift. But she never made it to work that day.

Her younger brother, Brandon Morrissey, told a police officer in a recorded interview played to the jury that she had no reason to run away.

“She was like really happy with her family and that,” he said.

The trial continues tomorrow.

3PM: THREE women will give evidence that murder accused Brenden Bennetts strangled them during rough sex, a Supreme Court jury has been told.

Crown prosecutor Vicki Loury QC has finished her opening address to the jury in the trial of Bennetts, who is accused of killing 16-year-old Jayde Kendall two years ago.

Ms Loury revealed towards the end of her address that three women would give evidence about rough sex with Bennetts.

She said the women would talk about occasions “where he was having sex with them… where he put his hands around their throats and squeezed, strangled.”

Ms Loury has called her first witness in the case, which is Jayde’s father, Bruce Morrissey.

EARLIER: Jayde Kendall’s cause of death is a mystery, but the last person to see the Gatton schoolgirl alive has admitted he killed her.

Brenden Bennetts, 21, has pleaded guilty in the Supreme Court in Brisbane to manslaughter in relation to the death of Jayde on August 14, 2015.

But the prosecution has not accepted his plea and this morning opened its case for murder, a charge to which Bennetts has pleaded not guilty.

Crown prosecutor Vicki Loury QC told the jury 16-year-old Jayde’s day began like any other.

Her father took her to school in the morning, via McDonald’s to drop her uniform off ahead of a shift that afternoon.

“But sadly she would not make her shift at McDonald’s and she would never make it home, she died that day,” Ms Loury said.

“And she died at the hands of Brenden Bennetts.

“(He) drove her to an area south of Gatton… killed her by some unknown means and dropped her dead body in agricultural land.”

Jayde was reported missing when her father, Bruce Morrissey, went to pick her up from McDonald’s about 9pm that night and was told she never clocked on.

Thirteen days later, her body was found on a property at Upper Tenthill covered in grass.

She was still in her Lockyer District High School uniform.

“… Her body was too decomposed for the pathologist who performed the post-mortem on her to determine her cause of death,” Ms Loury said.

It is alleged Bennetts picked Jayde up from school in his red Toyota Corolla on August 14 after they exchanged a series of messages – including 48 pictures on Snapchat – since the day before.

Ms Loury said in a message on the day Jayde went missing, she indicated she was “nervous”.

“All those messages had been deleted from his (Bennetts’) phone, but the computer analyst was able to retrieve them,” she said.

The Snapchat pictures can’t be recovered due to the nature of the app, Ms Lourey said.

The court was told there was CCTV footage of Bennetts using Jayde’s ATM card to withdraw $70.

Data from Google Maps also places him in the area where her body was found, Ms Lourey said.

Ms Loury’s opening address to the jury will continue this afternoon.

The trial is expected to run for two to three weeks.

Henry Sapiecha

Copenhagen: The mystery surrounding the fate of Swedish journalist Kim Wall has deepened with the discovery of a headless body in the Baltic Sea near where she is believed to have died on a homemade submarine.

The female torso without legs, arms or a head was found by a member of the public, said the head of the Danish police investigation, Jens Moller Jensen.

“We have recovered the body … It is the torso of a woman,” Jensen told media. “An inquest will be conducted.”

He said it was “too early” to say if the body was that of 30-year-old Swedish reporter Wall, who went missing more than a week ago after a trip on the submarine owned by 46-year-old Peter Madsen, a Danish inventor.

Jensen said the body was discovered hours after Madsen told authorities that Wall had died on board in an accident, and that he buried her at sea at an unspecified location.

Madsen was arrested in connection with Wall’s disappearance after his submarine sank off Denmark’s eastern coast, an incident police believe was deliberate.

He denied any wrongdoing and initially told authorities he had dropped the reporter off on a island in Copenhagen’s harbour on August 10.

Madsen will continue to be held on preliminary manslaughter charges, police said.

Madsen was known for financing his submarine project through crowdfunding. The first launch of his 40-tonne, nearly 18-metre-long UC3 Nautilus in 2008 made international headlines.

Wall’s family earlier told The Associated Press that she had worked in many dangerous places as a journalist and it was unimaginable “something could happen … just a few miles from the childhood home”.

Before his arrest, Madsen appeared on Danish television to discuss the submarine’s sinking and his rescue. The submarine was found 22 feet below sea level and was brought ashore shortly after it sank.

It was the journalist’s boyfriend who alerted authorities that the sub had not returned from a test run, police said.

Wall’s disappearance has riveted Scandinavia with the latest development raising more questions than it answers.

Madsen is due again in court next month. His lawyer, Betina Hald Engmark, told the Danish television network TV2 that her client was cooperating with police investigators and that he maintained that he was not guilty.

Madsen is known in Denmark as “Rocket Madsen,” an uncompromising builder of submarines and space rockets who was hoping to become the world’s first amateur space traveller riding in a homemade rocket.

For years he was able to build a community that offered helping hands and raised funds for his projects. But his temper caused conflicts with many of them, Thomas Djursing, a biographer, told BT, a Danish newspaper.

“He argues with every Tom, Dick and Harry,” Djursing said. “I’ve argued with him as well. But that’s what it’s like with people driven by deep passion.”

Wall’s friend and fellow journalist Victoria Greve, writing in the Swedish daily Expressen, commented on how improbable it was that a short day trip to Denmark would end up being the last reporting trip of her friend’s career.

“There’s a dark irony in Kim, who travelled to North Korea and reported from Haiti, should disappear in Denmark,” she wrote. “Perhaps it speaks to the vulnerability of female freelance journalists. To work alone and do everything.”

AP and the New York Times

Henry Sapiecha

THE father of Justine Damond, the Australian woman killed by a police officer in Minnesota, has called for justice for his daughter.

“We only ask that the light of justice shine down on the circumstances of her death,” an emotional John Ruszczyk said outside his family home in Freshwater on Sydney’s northern beaches this afternoon.

The bookshop owner and his family paid tribute to the former vet, with his family supporting him as he faced the media.

“We thought yesterday was our worst nightmare. But we awoke to the ugly truth, and it hurt even more.

“We went down to Freshy beach this morning, and saw the darkness change to light.” he said.

Ruszczyk paid tribute to his daughter, saying she touched many lives.

“Justine our daughter was so special to us, and to so many others,” he said. “Justine was a beacon to all of us,” he added.

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Maryan Herffernan and John Ruszczyk (front), father of Justine Damond, with brother Jason Ruszczyk and Katarina Ruszczyk. Picture: Dylan Robinson

According to the Star Tribune, officer Mohamed Noor violated his department’s rules on the use of bodycams.

The Minneapolis Police Department’s Policy and Procedure manual says that any use of force requires the camera’s activation. If things change quickly and the officer is too busy, he or she should activate the camera “as soon as it is safe to do so”.

The cameras record a 30-second video buffer, a so-called “lookback” that allows officers to capture whatever happened in the half-minute before it’s activated.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is investigating the actions of Noor, who shot Justine Ruszczyk Damond, 40, on Saturday night.

The BCA said in a statement that it will be the Police Department’s job to determine whether the officers officially violated the department’s body camera policy.

Ms Damond’s distraught fiance made an emotional appeal, saying his family is “utterly devastated”.

Don Damond, 50, said the family were “desperate for information” about her shooting — in which he also referred to as a “homicide.”

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner, after conducting an autopsy on Ms Damond, has issued a statement saying the fatal police shooting was a homicide. She died from a gunshot wound to her abdomen.

Police say officers were responding to a call about a possible assault late on Saturday when Ms Damond was killed. Authorities have released no details about what led to the shooting.

But a history of complaints made against the police officer who shot Ms Damond, including one incident which he is being sued for, has also emerged.

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A Queensland Australia couple have each been given life in prison for the sadistic torture and murder of mother-of-four Tia Landers.

Drug supplier John Edward Harris and his partner Linda Eileen Appleton were sentenced in Brisbane’s Supreme Court on Friday after pleading guilty to murdering Ms Landers in a brutal and bloody encounter at their Brighton home in June 2014.

Tia Lander-murder-victim-qld-australia image www.crimefiles.net

Tia Landers’ body was discovered, wrapped in a blanket, in a shallow grave at Beerburrum State Forest with 30 wounds. Photo: Facebook

Harris will have to spend at least 27 years behind bars before being eligible for parole, while Appleton must serve at least 23 years.

Justice Jean Dalton ordered their parole eligibility to be set beyond the statutory 20-year minimum for the “sadistic” killing, where Ms Landers was cut with a machete, bashed, kicked, stomped, and then twice shot in the head.

“The offending involved a protracted, sadistic and brutal torturing of Ms Landers over a period of hours,” Justice Dalton said.

The motivation for the killing, she said, stemmed from Appleton’s suspicion Ms Landers was having an affair with Harris, and stealing her clothes and jewellery.

Justice Dalton said Appleton was so obsessed with the idea of revenge that she began plotting it from inside jail seven days before Ms Landers’ killing.

A letter of apology from the 43-year-old was given to the Landers family on Friday, but Justice Dalton said she had great difficulty reconciling it with the evidence.

Appleton and 44-year-old Harris, who at one point held hands in the dock during sentencing, initially pleaded not guilty to the murder but reversed their pleas after five days of evidence in their trial.

It followed guilty pleas to interfering with her corpse and depriving the liberty of two men, Jake McKenzie and Ryan Morgan.

During the trial, Mr McKenzie told the court a fight had escalated at the couple’s home after Appleton slashed open Ms Landers’ leg with a machete.

Harris eventually retrieved a gun and shot her in the head, but she was “still alive enough to say no” before being fired on a second time.

During sentencing, the court heard Harris had previously been jailed for manslaughter in a case with striking similarities to Ms Landers’ murder.

In that case, the victim’s body was also wrapped up and dumped in the Beerburrum forest.

In a powerful victim impact statement read out in court, Ms Landers’ mother Mary said it was difficult to convey how the brutal crime had affected her life.

“There are no words adequate to describe the pain, anger and despair that I have felt from her murder,” she wrote.

“I have lost my faith and trust in people. I have trouble finding joy in the simple pleasures of life.”

Outside court, Haley Matthews said no sentence for her cousin’s brutal killing would be enough for her family.

“While Harris and Appleton were handed life sentences … this in our opinion is not justice,” she said.

“The only people who have received life sentences today are those who loved Tia, especially her children.”

AAP

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The Australia state’s highest court has dismissed former stripper Robyn Lindholm’s attempt to reduce her prison term, with judges saying her 25-year sentence was “merciful” given what she had done.

Lindholm pleaded guilty to murder after enlisting her lover Torsten Trabert and another man, John Ryan, to kill Hawthorn gym owner Wayne Amey on December 10, 2013.

Femme fatale stripper Robyn Lindholm image www.crimefiles.net

Femme fatale stripper Robyn Lindholm’s application for a reduced sentence was dismissed by the Court of Appeal. Photo: Supplied

This was one day before Lindholm and Mr Amey were due in court to address a dispute they had over a farm they owned in Bittern.

The trio last week appealed their prison terms, arguing they were “manifestly excessive”.

Torsten Trabert killer image www.crimefiles.net

Torsten Trabert Photo: Justin McManus

Lindholm is serving 25 years, Trabert 28 years and Ryan 31 years in prison for Mr Amey’s murder.

Court of Appeal Justices Mark Weinberg, Simon Whelan and Phillip Priest unanimously dismissed Lindholm’s right to challenge her sentence and refused Ryan and Torbert’s appeals.

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The judges said in a joint decision that Lindholm’s sentence was comparable with other similar cases where people were motivated to kill because someone had taken legal action against them.

“It is difficult to overstate Lindholm’s moral culpability for this crime. She pleaded guilty but the [sentencing] judge found that she was not remorseful…” they said.

John Ryan killer image www.crimefiles.net

John Ryan  Photo: Justin McManus

“In our view, the sentence imposed upon her was a merciful one in the circumstances.”

The judges said: “This was a truly terrible crime. Lindholm had tried to have Mr Amey killed for two years, including trying to persuade others to kill him for her.

“Trabert and Ryan callously, ruthlessly and violently carried out her wishes.”

Lindholm had continued to arrange for Mr Amey to be murdered even after she was given a community corrections order for breaking into his apartment.

The judges said the sentencing judge had given her prior criminal history “markedly favourable” treatment.

Lindholm’s lawyer, Scott Johns, had argued that her sentence was “unmistakably outside the range” available, and that the sentencing judge had not given enough weight to her guilty plea.

The judges dismissed Trabert and Ryan’s respective appeals, saying that while Lindholm “might well be seen as having greater moral culpability than them”, she had pleaded guilty, while they had maintained their innocence.

The two men were also “the ones who actually carried out the killing”.

They said there was not enough of a difference between their prison terms and Lindholm’s to warrant intervention.

Trabert and Ryan both argued that their sentences should be lowered because they had less responsibility for the murder than Lindholm.

Trabert’s lawyer had claimed his client’s motivation to kill was sex.

Ryan’s lawyer said he had entered into the arrangement at a later stage, thinking they were going to beat Mr Amey for mistreating Lindholm.

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Brittanee Drexel was last captured on video leaving the Blue Water Hotel in Myrtle Beach.image www.crimefiles.net

Brittanee Drexel was raped in a gang “stash house”. Picture: Missing Brittanee Marie Drexel

A TEENAGER who vanished from Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, in 2009 was repeatedly raped in a gang “stash house” for several days — then she was shot dead and fed to alligators when her disappearance generated too much media attention, the FBI said last week.

Fox News reports the shocking new details about the mysterious disappearance of 17-year-old Rochester, New York, native Brittanee Drexel came largely from a “jailhouse confession” that was subsequently substantiated by others with “titbits” and “second-hand information,” FBI Agent Gerrick Munoz testified in a federal court transcript obtained by The Post and Courier.

The inmate who gave the alleged bombshell confession, Taquan Brown, is serving a 25-year sentence for voluntary manslaughter in a different case.

Brown told authorities he was present during the final agonising moments of Drexel’s life, Munoz said.

Brown claimed to have seen Drexel when he visited a “stash house” — typically a place used to keep guns, drugs or money — in the McClellanville area, the general location where Drexel’s cellphone last pinged.

Munoz said Brown told officials he saw Da’Shaun Taylor, then 16 years old, and several other men “sexually abusing Brittanee Drexel.”

Brown then said he walked to the backyard of the house to give money to Taylor’s father, Shaun Taylor. But as Brown and Shaun Taylor talked, Drexel tried to make a break for it.

Her escape attempt was in vain, however, and one of the captors “pistol-whipped” Drexel and carried her back inside the house. Brown said he then heard two gunshots.

The next time Brown said he saw Drexel, her body was being wrapped up and removed from the house.

Brittanee Drexel was raped in a gang “stash house”.image ww.crimefiles.net

Brittanee Drexel was last captured on video leaving the Blue Water Hotel in Myrtle Beach. Picture: Missing Brittanee Marie Drexel

Drexel’s body has never been found, but Munoz said “several witnesses” have told investigators she was dumped in an unspecified McClellanville pond teeming with alligators.

Drexel was last captured on video on April 25, 2009, leaving the Blue Water Hotel in Myrtle Beach, where she was staying against her parents’ permission.

A different inmate serving time at Georgetown County Jail told officials he was informed Da’Shaun Taylor picked Drexel up in Myrtle Beach and transported her to McClellanville.

Munoz said the FBI believes Taylor “showed her off, introduced her to some other friend that were there … they ended up tricking her out with some of their friends, offering her to them and getting a human trafficking situation.”

As the media spotlight grew ever brighter on the desperate efforts to find Drexel, the girl was “murdered and disposed of,” Munoz said.

Brittanee Drexel’s body has never been found image www.crimefiles.net

Brittanee Drexel’s body has never been found. Picture: Missing Brittanee Marie Drexel

Munoz’s testimony was part of a bond hearing for a federal charge against Da’Shaun Taylor, now 25, stemming from a 2011 robbery of a McDonald’s. Taylor had previously confessed to being the getaway driver for the holdup, co-operated with South Carolina authorities and completed probation. But prosecutors are now trying to bring federal charges and, if convicted of the new charges, Taylor could face a life sentence.

Taylor’s lawyer contended the federal charges are a naked attempt to “squeeze” Taylor for information on the Drexel case. Asked by Magistrate Judge Mary Gordon Baker about “the real reason” for the charges and if they had to do with Drexel’s disappearance, Assistant US Attorney Winston Holliday said “that would be one” reason.

Taylor was released after posting $10,000 bail.

The FBI declined to discuss Munoz’s testimony or any aspect of the Drexel case with The Post and Courier.

This article originally appeared on Fox News and was republished with permission

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Henry Sapiecha

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Cologne attacks: ‘They touched us everywhere’

Victims of a mass indecent assault during New Year’s Eve celebrations in the German city of Cologne say they feared for their lives.

One of the victims of a mass sexual attack in the German city of Cologne has described the terrifying moment a mob of more than 30 angry men surrounded her and her friends and groped and robbed them during New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Another woman recounted how her underpants were literally torn from her body during the apparently coordinated attacks outside the main train station in Germany’s fourth-largest city around midnight on December 31.

Michelle described on German television how she was attacked during New Year's Eve celebrations in Cologne.image www.crimefiles.net

Michelle described on German television how she was attacked during New Year’s Eve celebrations in Cologne.

Cologne police say they have now received more than 90 complaints of robbery and sexual assault, including two accounts of rape, at the hands of hundreds of men who targeted the young women in the crush of revellers.
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City police chief Wolfgang Albers described the perpetrators as being of Arab or North African appearance, and called it “a completely new dimension of crime”. The attack has shocked Germany and ignited debate about the country’s refugee policy.

One of the victims, Michelle, 18, told German news channel NTV that she was with a group of 10 friends who arrived at the train station about 11pm on New Year’s Eve and noticed as many as 1000 people, almost all foreign men, gathered outside in an area adjacent to the city cathedral.

Michelle said that, as she and her friends walked towards the River Rhine to watch the fireworks, there were “suddenly 20 to 30 men who surrounded us, and more and more came”.

She said the men began to molest them, touching them on their legs, backs, torsos and buttocks, and attempted to reach under their clothes. “The good thing was that we were dressed in thick clothing,” she said.

The group of friends protested, but the men didn’t appear to understand German, Michelle said. “They were all foreigners,” she said.

Michelle said some of her friends were screaming during the assault, which she estimated lasted for five minutes. The friends eventually formed their hands in a chain and broke free, with several of the group crying.

It was only after they escaped that they realised they had also been robbed of their mobile phones, wallets, headphones and cigarettes.

“We were not beaten, have no permanent damage, but it was disgusting and not funny,” Michelle said.

Another woman, Anne, 25, told German newspaper Bild that she was waiting tables at a nightclub and went outside briefly during her break when she was attacked by a group of “Arab” men, who pulled up her dress and tore her underpants off before running away.

Another unnamed woman, aged 20, had every item of clothing torn from her body, while her friend was “abused with fingers”, Bild reported.

One victim said that, such was the chaos around the train station, she feared she could be killed or raped and “nobody would notice”, Reuters reported.

The woman said she and her friend were walking past the train station when they were surrounded by a group of men who “touched us everywhere” and “grabbed between our legs”.

“I thought to myself that if we stay here in this crowd they could kill us, they could rape us and nobody would notice. I thought we simply had to accept it. There was no one around us who helped or was in a position to help. All I wanted was to get out,” the woman said.

“I was scared that I wouldn’t leave this crowd alive. I was scared that if someone showed up with a knife I could be raped in the middle of the street.

“I have nightmares at night and I can’t sleep anymore. I am too scared to go outside on my own and of course I’m now scared to go to big cities.”

German police have identified three suspects in connection with attacks, but no arrests have been made.

Police in Hamburg are now reporting similar incidents on New Year’s Eve in the party area of St Pauli.

Police said they had received 53 complaints, more than half of them alleging sexual harassment, from victims aged 18 to 25 in Hamburg.

The victims appeared to have been targeted in a similar fashion to those in Cologne, and also described the attackers as being dark-skinned or appearing Arabic, police said.

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Henry Sapiecha

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19-year-old Alexandra Martinez, who’s been charged with grand larceny.image www.crimefiles.net

A TEENAGER has been arrested and charged with grand larceny after allegedly preying on wealthy men in New York.

Sources claim 19-year-old Alexandra Martinez made a killing in the Big Apple by getting picked up at bars and then ripping off her marks at their homes or hotels.

Martinez targeted at least five men in Brooklyn and Manhattan for a total haul of $58,000 in cash and pricey watches, the sources said. She allegedly slipped Mickeys into cocktails she stirred for at least two victims.

Martinez had an accomplice in the Brooklyn jobs and picked her victims based on the value of their watches, prosecutors said.

“They typically meet the male victims at clubs or restaurants. The victims are usually wearing Rolex watches,” prosecutor Wilfredo Cotto said.

After working their way into the men’s luxury apartments, Martinez allegedly mixed drinks that knocked out the victims, who would later “awake to find their property missing,” Cotto said.

In one case, Martinez and her accomplice allegedly made off with four watches — three Rolexes and a Breitling, worth more than $38,500 — and $4,500 from an apartment.

Martinez allegedly chose her victims based on the price of their watches image www.crimefiles.net

Martinez allegedly chose her victims based on the price of their watches.

The victim, 24, told cops he met the women at an Artichoke Pizza outlet before bringing them home at around 3am. Sept. 4, the sources said.

In another case, Martinez and a crony allegedly pulled the same stunt on a 44-year-old man at around 4am. Thanksgiving Day.

That victim told cops he invited the women up to his pad at 111 Lawrence St., where they swiped a $10,000-plus Rolex and about $800, according to court records.

Martinez allegedly worked alone in two of the Manhattan cases, including one in which a 34-year-old victim chased her down and caught her in a cab with his credit cards after she allegedly swiped his wallet while he was in the bathroom in his apartment at 52 Greenwich Ave. on July 22.

Martinez, who is charged with five counts of grand larceny, was released on $50,000 bond.

Defence lawyer Marianne Bertuna said Martinez would “vehemently” fight the charges.

The New York Post has previously reported on an alarming rise in watch thefts in New York this year, including at least 31 Rolexes that have been taken by women going after men in bars and clubs.

Most notably, a Beverly Hills watch dealer, Steven Rostovsky, told cops he lost a $590,000, limited-edition Greubel Forsey watch and $6,000 to two women he brought from a Midtown strip club to The Baccarat hotel in the predawn hours of Dec. 7.

Also, two women stole $750,000 in watches and jewellery from the Tribeca pad of basketball star Derrick Williams, who brought them home after meeting them in a nightclub.

Martinez is not a suspect in either of those crimes.

This story originally appeared on the New York Post and was republished with permission.

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Two Women in ‘Sexy’ Outfits Seduce and Drug Prison Guards, Escape with 26 Prisoners

Two prison guards succumbed to one of the sexier breakout schemes in recent memory, when two women dressed in skimpy “sexy” police costumes showed up Thursday at a prison in Nova Mutum, a small Brazilian city near Cuiaba.

According to CNN, the two women managed to talk two prison guards into letting them inside. They seduced the guards and spiked their drinks in the process. The guards woke up the next morning, naked and handcuffed, with little to no memory of the night before. 26 prisoners had escaped while they slept, presumably aided by the mysterious sexy women.

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A spokesman for the Justice Secretariat of Mato Grosso, which oversees prisons, confirmed to CNN that officials found bottles of spiked whiskey and a pair of provocative, police-themed costumes next to the handcuffed guards, who were passed out.

“We assume that is what the women were wearing when they seduced the guards,” spokesman Willian Fidelis said.

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Since the escape, 11 of the missing inmates have been apprehended. It’s unclear as of yet who, of the 26 prisoners and two women, was behind the breakout.

“Nothing like this has ever happened,” Fidelis said. “Nova Mutum is a small city. People haven’t talked about anything else since it happened. Especially since 15 prisoners are still out there.”

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Mersane Warria has been arrested over the children’s deaths image www.crimefiles.net

Mersane Warria has been arrested over the children’s deaths. 

THE bodies of eight children stabbed to death have been removed from the Manoora house where they were found on Friday.

Autopsies will be carried out today as the investigation into their murders continue.

The mother of seven of the eight children was arrested overnight.

The eight children, aged between 18 months and 15 years, were found dead yesterday morning by their 20-year-old brother who raised the alarm with police.

The suspect is 37-year-old Mersane Warria — the mother of seven of the eight children and the aunt of the eighth victim.

In a press conference held this morning at the crime scene Murray St, Manoora, Detective Inspector Bruno Asnicar said forensics officers had spent the night trying to piece together the scene.

“Overnight we’ve had our forensic people still in the house, the deceased have been removed from the residence, today we will have our coroner and pathologist conduct their investigations, with the assistance of the family,” Det Inp Asnicar said.

“The 37-year-old mother of several of the children involved in this incident has been arrested for murder overnight and is currently under police guard at the Cairns Base Hospital.

“The bodies have been removed from the residence, autopsies will occur today and it will be after that, we can comment on those sorts of things (causes of death).

cairns child murders images www.crimefiles (15)

“The (forensic officers) are looking for DNA, they’re looking for mapping of the scene to establish what occurred, we’re looking time chronology, they’re looking for the order of the actions that occurred, they’re looking for any trace evidence in the residents itself, they’re looking for blood spatter patterns.

“All of these things our experts are trained to look for, to establish 100 per cent exactly what happened in that house when these offences were committed.”

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Police have found a number of weapons in the home.

“We’ve located a number of weapons, once again our very good scientists will be looking at those weapons at some stage we will be able to determine if we have the weapon that was used.

“We are talking about edged weapons, knives.”

Det Insp Asnicar said the house would remain a crime scene “for at least another couple of days.”

Police work at the scene overnight.cairns multiple murder scene image www.crimefiles.net

Police work at the scene overnight. AFP PHOTO/Peter PARKS Source: AFP

“It’s not a thing I set a time limit on, our forensic people are experts in this field and they will keep it, just as long as they need to keep it.”

At this time police are not looking for any other suspects.

“At this stage, we’re not looking for anybody else, we are comfortable that the community at large is safe and have no need for concern.”

The street where the horrific murders occurred was not especially known to police as an area that gets a lot of calls.

The 20-year-old brother who was seen at the scene yesterday has been spoken to by police.

“We’ve spoken to everybody, that 20-year-old man, there’s been some speculation there too, he is not of particular interest to us.”

The mother was in a stable condition in hospital recovering from stab wounds.

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“At the current time she is awake and lucid and able to speak.”

The officers who faced the horrendous scene yesterday have undergone counselling and are doing well.

“My officers are coping very well, they’re all professional people, they’re very skilled in what they do and we unfortunately get exposed to this type of thing more than anybody would like to, but all the support mechanisms are there in place for us and my staff and they’ll be fine.”

“This area does get calls for service, this particular house, hasn’t been flagged for particular calls of service, it’s not a problem house, it’s just an ordinary neighbourhood, a lot of good people, a lot of kids in the area, this is just something that has caught everybody by surprise, it’s an absolute tragic event.”

If you, or someone you know needs help, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14

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Henry Sapiecha

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