Father says justice done as Jill Meagher murderer jailed
Adrian Bayley will serve at least 35 years for ‘savage' crime
Jill Meagher s father George McKeon makes a statement to the media on the steps of the Supreme Court after the sentencing of Adrian Bayley for his daughter’s rape and murder. Photograph: Michael Clayton / Fairfax Media
Bayley (41) in Melbourne Supreme Court on June 11th when he was convicted of the murder and of Jill Meagher. Photograph: Jason South / Fairfax Media
Undated photograph of Tom and Jill Meagher. Photograph: Jill Meagher RIP Facebook page.
The father of Jill Meagher said today justice had been done after the man who dragged the Drogheda woman off a Melbourne street, raped and murdered her was jailed for at least 35 years.
George McKeon was speaking outside court in Melbourne this morning after Adrian Ernest Bayley (41) was jailed to life in prison for the crime.
‘‘Jill was brutally raped and murdered and is never coming back,” said Mr McKeon. “Because of Ben Leonard and the team at Victoria Police and Richard Lewis and his colleagues at Public Prosecutions Victoria, justice has now been done.
Video: Statement by Jill Meagher's father
“Police and prosecutors, we thank you.”
Justice Geoffrey Nettle in Victorian Supreme Court said what happened to the Drogheda woman (29) was one of the worst crimes imaginable.
Justice Nettle, when sentencing Bayley to life imprisonment with a minimum of 35 years, said Bayley was a sexual deviant who had intended to murder Ms Meagher either because she was threatening to call the police after being savagely raped or because he had taken a perverse pleasure in taking her life.
The judge said Bayley’s offending was particularly heinous and made even worse by his attempts to conceal Ms Meagher’s body and the fact he had raped and murdered the former ABC radio employee while on parole.
Justice Nettle said the murder, in terms of moral culpability, ranked “among the worst kinds conceivable’’ and Bayley had to be jailed for a very long time.
‘‘The deceased was unknown to you,’’ the judge told Bayley.
‘‘You were larger and stronger than she and you used that physical advantage to dominate her. In effect, you dragged her off the street, late at night while she was peaceably going about her own business within a stone’s throw of her home. The rape was savage and degrading. It took place over time.”
Justice Nettle said Bayley told psychologist Professor James Ogloff that he had tried to kiss Ms Meagher and touch her bottom outside a Brunswick laneway off Sydney Road at 1.38am on September 22nd last year.
Ms Meagher reacted by stepping back and slapping Bayley across the face. Bayley told Dr Ogloff he lost it and became outraged that she had rejected his advances.
Justice Nettle said Bayley was determined to have his way with Ms Meagher and overpowered her and raped her where she stood. Bayley strangled Ms Meagher after she became angry with him following the rape, hit him with her mobile phone and threatened to call the police.