The site of the search for Daniel Morcombe's remains. FILE
The site of the search for Daniel Morcombe's remains. FILE

Media barred from reporting Morcombe case for now

MEDIA has been restricted from reporting any evidence or submissions made during pre-trial applications in the case against Daniel Morcombe's alleged murderer.

Justice Ros Atkinson said material discussed during the hearing could not be published until a jury in the case against Brett Peter Crown, 44, had reached verdicts or the charges had been dismissed.

She said keeping the court hearing open to the public while restricting publication, in any form, adhered to the principles of open justice.

"The reason why there must be a question of a restriction of publication is because of the public interest in ensuring a fair trial of the defendant," she said.

"Fundamental to the workings of the criminal justice system is a fair trial and a verdict reached as a result.

"A question has arisen which must be decided prior to the trial about the admissibility of evidence.

"That is hardly surprising.

"It is a very common situation that judges rule on the admissibility of evidence.

"Whether or not certain parts of the evidence are admissible or not is not yet known.

"It is important for the fair trial that the jury hears the admissible evidence."

Crown prosecutor Michael Byrne sought the suppression order in Brisbane Supreme Court on Wednesday to "protect the future fair trial".

Daniel vanished while waiting for a bus under the Kiel Mountain overpass at Woombye on December 7, 2003.

He was planning to go to Sunshine Plaza to buy Christmas presents for his family.

Mr Cowan will face a trial in February accused of murdering and indecently treating the 13-year-old Palmwoods boy before interfering with his corpse.

In 2011, DNA tests confirmed bones found in dense bushland in the Glass House Mountains were those belonging to Daniel.

His remains were only released to the family last year to allow him to be buried at the Woombye Cemetery.


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