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Vic pair wanted help in murder: court

AAP logoAAP 9/01/2017 Jacqueline Le

Two people accused of bludgeoning a Victorian mother to death with a hammer allegedly asked a friend to kill the victim on three separate occasions.

Christine Lyons, 45, and her ex-partner Ronald Lyons, 44, who are unreleated, are accused of murdering mother-of-four Samantha Kelly, 39, in Kangaroo Flat in 2016.

Their committal hearing was told Christine had wanted Ms Kelly's four children.

Ronald's cousin, Shiralee Lyons, on Tuesday testified that the pair asked her to kill Ms Kelly just a few weeks before she was last seen alive on January 20.

"Christine asked me, 'will you make Sam disappear'," Shiralee Lyons told the Bendigo Magistrates' Court.

Ronald allegedly suggested making Ms Kelly's death look like an accident.

"Ron came up with the idea of putting a syringe up her veins and it's instant heart attack, and can't be traced," Ms Lyons said.

But she did not tell police about these alleged conversations until several months after Ms Kelly's decomposing body was found in a dry creek bed on February 12.

"I just didn't remember," the 36-year-old said on Tuesday.

Ms Lyons says the first conversation took place some time after Christmas while she, Christine and Ronald were travelling in a car.

"Chrissy brought Sammy up, just talking about ideas about how to do Sam in," she said.

"What I remember was it had come up about Sam, and she (Christine) wanted Sam's kids and she wanted to do Sam in."

Ms Lyons said she did not think the pair were serious.

"I treated it as a joke, laughed it off," she told the court.

The pair asked her to kill Ms Kelly on another two occasions, she says.

"There was a third conversation where they told me they wanted me to kill her," Ms Lyons said in a police statement on August 23.

She also told detectives that Christine had her "tubes tied and had asked to get a reversal".

Counsel for Ronald, John Desmond, accused Ms Lyons of lying to police about the murder plot, something she denied.

Another witness also testified that Christine wanted to take Ms Kelly's children from her.

"Chrissy said 'I'm going to take the girls because they're mine'," Rebecca Stowe told the court.

Ms Kelly may have been unable to fight off her attackers because she was drugged.

A toxicology report found levels of medication in Ms Kelly's body which suggest she would have been affected by sedatives at the time of her death, forensic physician Morris Odell says.

The committal hearing to determine if the Lyons should stand trial will resume on Wednesday.

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