Australian Woman Accused of Orchestrating Murder of Ex-Boyfriend Then Having Crime Staged as Horrible Woodchipper Accident

Sharon Graham and Bruce James Saunders
Sharon Graham and Bruce James Saunders Twitter

A woman has been accused of being the mastermind behind an alleged plan to murder her ex-partner and disguise the crime as a horrific woodchipper accident.

As reported by Brisbane Times, Sharon Graham, 62, formerly of Nambour, pleaded not guilty in Brisbane Supreme Court on Monday to the murder of Bruce James Saunders in Goomboorian – a rural locality in the Gympie region of Queensland, Australia.

Graham Allegedly Sought Help of Lovers to Kill, Feed Saunders' Body into Industrial Woodchipper

Sharon Graham, Greg Roser and Peter Koenig
Sharon Graham (from right to left) Greg Roser and Peter Koenig. Twitter

The matter proceeded to trial and crown prosecutor Todd Fuller KC told the jury Graham procured Greg Roser to kill Saunders and then, with the help of Peter Koenig, to feed a substantial portion of his body into an industrial woodchipper. According to Daily Mail, Roser was in a relationship with Graham at the time of the alleged crime and Koeniq was previously in an intimate relationship with her.

Fuller said Saunders's death on November 11, 2017 seemed to have been a terrible accident while clearing vegetation from a two-hectare house and land plot that belonged to Graham's friend. "But the reality is far more serious than that. His death was no accident, it was an intentional killing," he said.

Graham Accused of Killing Saunders for Financial Gain

Fuller said Graham, who was on Centrelink benefits at the time, wanted Saunders to die so she would gain ownership of his house and car along with a combined $830,000 payout from his life insurance and superannuation.

Fuller told the jury that Roser hit Saunders from behind with an iron bar and repeatedly struck him on the head until he stopped moving. The jury was also shown handwritten notes found in Roser's caravan that prosecutors said described Saunders' car, work schedule and how to break into his home, along with suggested days to carry out an attack.

In what Fuller described as an incomprehensible and barbaric act, Koenig then helped Roser carry Saunders to the woodchipper and ran his body through it as they held onto his legs.

Koenig Agreed to Testify That He was Told by Graham to Cover Up Murder as Accident

Fuller said Koenig, in return for a reduced sentence, would testify he was told by Graham to lie to police to cover up the murder as an accident. He also agreed to testify that Graham instructed him to mention in an interview with police Saunders had been struck on the head by a tree branch while working at the property.

Graham's defence barrister, Peter Richards, in a brief opening statement said his client conceded she was the beneficiary of Saunders's estate but at no time did she ask, counsel or procure Roser or Koenig to kill him.

A central issue in this trial will be the credibility and reliability of Peter Koenig," Richards said. The trail is scheduled to continue for two more weeks.