Man 'forced to hand over car'
THE former girlfriend of a man alleging he was forced at gunpoint to hand over his black Subaru WRX to a Goonellabah man says he told her it was either the car or her and their baby.
Carina Ferguson, of the Gold Coast, was giving evidence in the Lismore District Court trial of Julie-Anne McMahon, who is charged with perverting the course of justice by allegedly falsifying a receipt for the sale of a 1990 model Ford Falcon.
Ms Ferguson said she and then boyfriend Jason Gaudron were addicts of the drug ‘speed’ while living in Lismore in 2007 and had attended a barbeque in late March that year at the Goonellabah home of his friends, Arthur ‘Artie’ Shackell and McMahon. While there Jason told her to begin moving their stuff from the WRX into an old white Ford.
“Jason came out in a hurry with a look on his face and said I had to get our stuff out of the car. He told me it was either the car or me and the baby,” she said.
“Jason said a gun was put to his head and he was made to sign the car over. We drove to Byron Bay (in the Ford) and stayed at a motel.
“I was confused as I did not understand what was going on. Yes, I was shocked. More disbelief than anything as I thought they were his mates.”
During the cross examination by defence barrister Peter Davies, Ms Ferguson said her boyfriend could not make a formal complaint to police, but was later phoned by police after the registration plates from the Subaru were found at the home of Shackell and McMahon.
She said that she and Mr Gaudron left a Lismore caravan park where they had been living without paying because ‘it wasn’t safe to be there’ and they had wanted to get away from the situation.
Although she no longer used ‘speed’, Ms Ferguson said she and Mr Gaudron had been almost daily intravenous users of the drug.
She said the WRX was fitted with an immobiliser that needed a PIN code to start it.
Detective Sgt Mick Smith said McMahon claimed to have received $3000 for the sale of the Ford and told police that $2500 in cash found secreted in her underwear had been part of the transaction. She later provided signed receipts of the sale.
The trial continues today.