Man who raped and murdered sister to remain locked up

A TOOWOOMBA man who brutally raped and murdered his sister during the '80s and was sentenced to life behind bars has had his latest bid for freedom rejected.

James Patrick McGrane, 45, was 17 when he murdered his sister, Dianne Madelaine McGrane, 21, on March 24, 1986, at Hodgson Vale, south of Toowoomba.

Her naked body was found on the bedroom floor of a pottery shop where she had been bound and gagged, raped and then stabbed 11 times in the back, chest and sides.

McGrane has been eligible to apply for parole since April, 1999.

But he will remain behind bars for at least another year after yet another unsuccessful bid to be released, this time at his annual parole review hearing last month in the Brisbane Supreme Court.

Justice James Douglas, in handing down his decision on Wednesday, said there was no new information submitted at the hearing which would alleviate concerns about McGrane's risk to the community should he be released.

McGrane has made a number of applications to be release from prison, the most recent in June last year, when the Queensland State Parole Board once again rejected his bid for freedom.

The board found there was an unacceptable risk he would commit another serious offence if released into the community after spending nearly three decades behind bars.

McGrane successfully appealed the ruling and the Brisbane Supreme Court ordered the parole board's decision be set aside and his application be reconsidered.

Justice Philip McMurdo said the parole board could have, and should have, considered that a set of conditions could be attached to granting McGrane parole which would significantly reduce the relative risk to the community.

But Justice McMurdo's ruling was overruled in August last year after the parole board appealed the decision in the Queensland Court of Appeal.

McGrane can apply to be released from prison again during his annual parole review next year.



Topics:  court crime editors picks murder rape toowoomba

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