9 Jan 2023

Gail Maney 'months' away from filing evidence on Gone Fishing murder conviction

10:09 am on 9 January 2023

By Adam Dudding of Stuff

Gail Maney

Gail Maney spent 15 years in jail for the killing of West Auckland tyre-fitter Deane Fuller-Sandys. Photo: Jason Dorday / Stuff

Gail Maney has always maintained that she never even met Dean Fuller-Sandys, let alone commissioned a "hit" on him.

The team fighting to overturn Gail Maney's murder conviction say they are just months away from filing evidence to court.

Investigator and former police officer Tim McKinnel says: "We are progressing well with Gail's case and are planning to file evidence with the court in the first couple of months of 2023."

Gail Maney spent 15 years in jail for the killing of West Auckland tyre-fitter Deane Fuller-Sandys, who disappeared without trace in 1989.

The events leading to Maney's arrest and imprisonment were the subject of an award-winning investigative podcast series, Gone Fishing, that was co-produced by Stuff and RNZ.

Listen to the podcast here.

For years after his disappearance, Fuller-Sandys was believed to have drowned while fishing on Auckland's west coast.

But after a cold-case investigation in the late 1990s, police accused Maney of asking her associate Stephen Stone to kill Fuller-Sandys, in revenge for stealing drugs from her home in Larnoch Rd, West Auckland.

RNZ/Stuff podcast Gone Fishing.

The Gone Fishing podcast investigates problems with the police investigation into the disappearance of Deane Fuller-Sandys. Photo: RNZ/Stuff

The police case was that Fuller-Sandys was shot dead at that same Larnoch Rd flat, in front of numerous witnesses.

But Maney has always maintained that she is innocent and that she never even met Fuller-Sandys, let alone commissioned a "hit" on him.

Maney and Stone were both found guilty of Fuller-Sandys murder, and two other associates were found guilty as accessories after the fact. Maney is on life parole, having spent a total of 15 years in prison, including recalls to prison for breaching parole conditions.

McKinnel, who played a key role in the overturning of Teina Pora's wrongful conviction, started looking into Maney's case when reporter Amy Maas approached him for input into the Gone Fishing podcast. He soon concluded there were numerous "red flags" in the case, and said he believed Maney's case "could be bigger" than Teina Pora's.

Since then, a team that includes top lawyer Julie-Anne Kincade KC has been investigating avenues for challenging Maney's conviction.

McKinnel said: "Gail's case is quite complex in terms of jurisdiction, given she has already appealed through to the Supreme Court. But we now have evidence that, we say, demonstrates the court of appeal was materially misled in Gail's 2005 appeal."

He said Kincade had "finalised the jurisdictional approach for Gail" and the team was now "putting together the final pieces of evidence".

He added that some others from the "Larnoch Rd Four" were also progressing cases challenging their convictions and that "there will be further developments there in 2023".

This story was originally published on Stuff.

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