Three face court on murder charges, dumping body near Gympie

THREE men accused of murdering Gold Coast man Shaun Matthew Barker and dumping his body in forestry near Gympie have faced court.

Cooloola Cove men Stephen John Armitage, 45, and his son Matthew Leslie Armitage, 22, had their matter briefly mentioned at the Brisbane Magistrates Court on Monday.

They will remain in police custody to reappear on November 3.

Stephen was arrested on Saturday after stepping off a plane from Thailand at Brisbane Airport.

Co-accused William Frances Dean, 37, appeared before Magistrate Bevan Manthey at the Toowoomba Magistrates Court on Monday.

The Gold Coast man had been living in Highfields.

His matters have been adjourned until October 16 for a mention in Brisbane.

All three men were charged with murder, torture, deprivation of liberty and interfering with a corpse.

Only supreme courts can grant bail for murder charges in Queensland.

Mr Barker was last seen alive at a Broadbeach service station on December 10 before being reported missing by family on January 14.

Police allege he was kidnapped before being bashed and tortured at a Cooloola Cove home and that his body was kept in an esky for some time before he was murdered.

Forestry workers discovered Mr Barker's skull and other remains in the Toolara State Forest on April 10.

There were signs the body had been burnt.

The offences are alleged to have occurred between December 9 last year and January 1 this year.

Detectives have appealed to members of the public to come forward with information about the location or movements of a white 1983 model 80 Series Toyota Landcruiser station wagon, which at the time displayed Queensland registration 817SBZ.


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