Lone Wolf bikie accused of bizarre car theft
Accused Lone Wolf bikie gang member, Arthur William Shackell, 46, was yesterday committed for trial to the Lismore District Court for robbery armed with a dangerous weapon over the incident, which is alleged to have happened last year at Shackell's Goonellabah residence.
Shackell appeared at Lismore Local Court with his partner Julie-Anne McMahon, 31, who will face Lismore District Court over the incident, charged with perverting the course of justice.
Police allege Shackell forced an acquaintance to sign over ownership to him of a black 2000 Subaru Impreza WRX, worth $25,000, by holding a handgun to the man's head.
Giving evidence at Lismore Local Court yesterday, the victim said he, his fiance and young son, had been at a barbecue at Shackell's home on March 31 last year when the alleged robbery took place.
Under cross examination by defence solicitor Ralph James, the victim said he was summoned to a bedroom in the house where Shackell pointed a handgun at his head and ordered him to sign the registration papers. Once the papers were signed, Shackell ordered the victim to leave the house.
Police allege Shackell then handed the victim keys to a white Ford Falcon sedan.
The victim and his family left the party and drove to Byron Bay where he was stopped by police around 2am the next day during a random breath test but did not report the incident to police in fear of his and his family's safety.
While giving evidence, the victim said he told police he had just had a problem in Lismore and asked police officers not to use the police radio. He said he did not want the call broadcast for fear Shackell, who he said had a police radio scanner at his house, would discover where they were and asked if the police officer would use a mobile phone.
Police Constable Daniel Wills, who dealt with the victim during the random breath test, told the court he recalled his conversation with the victim as 'bizarre'.
He said he did not use his mobile phone and did not recall the victim discussing the issue of the scanner or the request to use his mobile phone instead of the police radio.
The prosecution then asked Const Wills if it could be possible that the victim did raise the issue of the scanners to which he replied it could be possible but he could not recall the request.
Two witnesses were unable to confirm the presence of the gun Shackell is alleged to have threatened the victim with.
In June last year police executed a search warrant of Shackell's house locating the number plates of the Subaru.
No handgun was found.
While committing Shackell and McMahon to trial, Magistrate Annette Sinclair said evidence given by the victim was tenuous.
She said there was no direct evidence to account for the time the victim and his family left the party and the time they arrived at a motel in Byron Bay.
Ms Sinclair said there was some speculation as to why the number plates were found by police two months after the incident and not the handgun.
Shackell and McMahon will face the Lismore District Court on August 27. Their bail was continued.