Victim's wounds indicate 'frenzied' attack

Jamie Cust is standing trial for murder in the NSW Supreme Court at Newcastle.
Jamie Cust is standing trial for murder in the NSW Supreme Court at Newcastle.

An abattoir worker stabbed to death by a work mate in a "frenzied" attack had three wounds so serious that each was enough to kill him, a NSW court has heard.

Filipino man Jesus Bebita was found in a pool of blood on the bathroom floor of his Scone flat in December 2018, with 49 stab wounds to his head, back and hands.

Jamie Cust, who was 21 at the time of the attack, is standing trial for murder in the NSW Supreme Court at Newcastle after turning himself in to police in the hours after the attack, tearily telling them Mr Bebita had tried to rape him.

Cust's barrister Paul Rosser is arguing the 23-year-old is not guilty of murder, but of the lesser charge of manslaughter.

He was acting under "extreme provocation" after waking to find 41-year-old Mr Bebita - who was "something of a mentor" - sexually assaulting him, Mr Rosser argues.

On Thursday Detective Senior Constable Daniel Robins told the court Cust was emotional as he told police what had happened.

The pair visited a bottle shop in Aberdeen, and took selfies together, before Cust said he went to bed.

"When I woke up my pants were down, and he was rubbing his penis on me," Sen Const Robins said Cust had told him.

"We were in bed together, and he was touching my penis, and I freaked out."

Cust then asked police if there had been any reports of a house burning down in Scone.

"I stabbed Jesus several times, and to cover it up I lit the doona alight to burn the house down ... I should have got on a boat and left the country," Cust said, according to the officer.

When police visited Mr Bebita's home, Sen Const Robins was the first to spot the man curled up in a semi-foetal position and covered in blood.

"Perhaps it didn't occur to you at the time, but considering (crime scene photographs) is there something unusual?" Mr Rosser asked.

"The pants are on back to front," Cust replied.

Sen Const Robins said he didn't check for underwear on the body, but when Mr Bebita's clothes were handed back after his post-mortem there was no underwear.

The court on Thursday heard evidence Cust was seen by a sexual assault nurse, and a series of tests conducted, during which no genital injury was noted, no semen detected and no DNA found other than his own.

The nurse told the court showering, as Cust had done after the attack, impacts on the evidence such examinations can detect.

However, semen was detected on Mr Bebita's penis in the post-mortem, NSW chief forensic pathologist Isabel Brouwer told the court.

The post-mortem also catalogued the 49 wounds found on Mr Bebita, including one 28cm long and another so deep it reached his skull, which indicated the attack was "frenzied".

Defensive wounds to his hands and forearms suggested there was a struggle, she said.

Three wounds - including an incision to his neck that cut the internal jugular vein - were serious enough to kill him on their own.

"That's a major blood vessel ... one would expect, loss of consciousness within minutes and then death to follow soon after," she said.

"It's very difficult to predict how long a person would take to die of any or combination of those injuries.

"But one could probably expect that the person would have at some stage either been unresponsive or dead at the time that at least some of these injuries were inflicted."

Australian Associated Press