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Brookfield Murder Sensation: Gerard Baden-Clay's midnight call to father discovered at last minute before Supreme Court bail hearing


Gerard Baden-Clay and his father, Nigel Baden-Clay,
embrace yesterday while his mother, Elaine, looks on. 

AN APPARENT midnight call between the phones of accused killer Gerard Baden-Clay and his father, Nigel, on the night his wife Allison went missing was discovered only at the last minute before his Supreme Court bail hearing.

Explosive allegations from prosecutors opposing bail included a claim Baden-Clay's iPhone was used to call his father around 12.30am on Friday, April 20. The alleged 1min 23sec call used FaceTime, which allows users to see each other while talking, and came about seven hours before Baden-Clay reported his wife missing.

Prosecutor Danny Boyle told the court on Friday that the forensic examination of Baden-Clay's phone had only come back a day earlier.

Evidence of the FaceTime call "seems to be contrary to being asleep from 10pm to 6am", Mr Boyle said.

It contradicted Baden-Clay's alleged account to police of going to bed hours before the call and waking at 6am to find his wife missing.

Evidence showed that his phone was connected to a charger at 1.48am on April 20.

Previously secret details of the police case, including alleged motives of love and money, were revealed during Baden-Clay's failed bid to gain bail. A packed courtroom heard allegations the real estate agent was involved in an ongoing affair with former staffer Toni McHugh and had promised in an early April email that he would leave his wife by July 1.

The deadline would have been Mrs Baden-Clay's 44th birthday.

Police allege that, on April 20, the day Mrs Baden-Clay was reported missing, the two women were due to attend the same real estate conference.

In further claims, Baden-Clay was alleged to have phoned insurers about his wife's life insurance policy on April 12 and Google-searched the American term "taking the Fifth" about the right to remain silent on April 18. He allegedly Googled "self-incrimination" at 7.09am on April 20, just minutes before calling police.

Prosecutors and police painted a picture of severe money troubles, with alleged debts of more than $1 million.

And Allison Baden-Clay's two life insurance policies and superannuation fund would have provided a potential windfall of $967,000.

Baden-Clay was alleged to have called the insurance company shortly after a body was found at Kholo Creek but before it was identified.

Defence counsel Peter Davis, SC, argued that the case was highly circumstantial, with no evidence of the cause, location, time nor date of death.

There was also no evidence of Baden-Clay nor any vehicle leaving the family home on the key night nor that Baden-Clay was near where his wife's body was found.

Mr Davis disputed a police claim that Mrs Baden-Clay's blood was found in the boot of one of their cars, saying that conflicted with post mortem examination evidence her only injury was a chipped tooth.


24.6.12