ACCUSED OF MURDER: Former nurse Megan Jean Haines is accused of murdering two residents at a Ballina nursing home.
ACCUSED OF MURDER: Former nurse Megan Jean Haines is accused of murdering two residents at a Ballina nursing home. Contributed

Judge sends jury to decide accused double murderer's fate

EVIDENCE against accused double murderer Megan Jean Haines is purely circumstantial, but the 12 jurors who must decide her fate have been warned that does not necessarily make it weak.

The jury has been sent out to deliberate after a fortnight of evidence, with Sydney Supreme Court Justice Peter Garling giving his final directions.

"If you have reasonable doubt about the guilt of (Ms Haines) she is entitled to be acquitted,” he said.

"However, the Crown does not have to prove every single fact in this case beyond reasonable doubt.”

Justice Garling said the evidence of Marie Darragh and Isabella Spencer's alleged murders was circumstantial because no witness had testified they saw or heard Ms Haines administer a lethal insulin dose to either woman.

"There is no CCTV footage of those events... and there is no admission by the accused that she committed those offences,” he said.

"To be satisfied with the guilt of (Ms Haines) you must be persuaded by the Crown that her guilt is the only rational inference that all the circumstances draw you to conclude.”

In his closing remarks, defence barrister Troy Edwards suggested the jury could not be satisfied beyond reasonable doubt Ms Haines was the only person in the centre with access to insulin on the night the women were allegedly murdered.

The women were residents of St Andrew's nursing home in Ballina on the New South Wales North Coast.

ARM NEWSDESK



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