Jailed killer Cameron Mansell's appeal bid against his conviction for murdering businessman Craig Puddy will proceed after lawyers complied with a judge's ultimatum and filed crucial documents within hours of today's deadline.
Mansell, who is serving a minimum of 18 years behind bars for murdering Perth businessman Craig Puddy on May 3, 2010, was given the final ultimatum in March by a judge who granted a final 56-day extension to file the appeal paperwork by 4pm today.
Justice Robert Mazza had said that in his view there had been a long delay in the appeal matter and it was important that appeals were dealt with expeditiously. He ruled that if the documents were not filed by this afternoon, the appeal bid would automatically be dismissed.
Mansell was found guilty of the murder and sentenced in November last year after a Supreme Court jury heard eight weeks of evidence.
Mr Puddy's grieving family, who still don't know the murdered businessman's final resting place, have previously described to The West Australian how they were living a legal nightmare in which they were being denied a death certificate for the murdered businessman as long as Mansell continued his appeal bid. They said the situation meant they could not find closure because they were unable to deal with Mr Puddy's assets and businesses in a way that respected his legacy.
Mansell had been previously advised by a Perth barrister that he had no grounds of appeal but recently sought advice from a prominent Eastern States QC David Grace.A spokesman for the Court of Appeal and a spokeswoman for the Director of Public Prosecutions both confirmed this afternoon that the necessary documents had been filed to allow Mansell to continue with his bid to seek leave to appeal against his conviction.
Mansell had fought allegations he murdered Mr Puddy as a result of a soured business relationship and Mr Puddy's suspicions that Mansell had been stealing funds from a Crawley bar the pair were involved in.
He had not taken the stand but claimed through his lawyers and in accounts he told others that he had been at Mr Puddy's home when three thugs entered and beat Mr Puddy in front of him.
Mansell had claimed the thugs forced him to put his hands in Mr Puddy's blood and touch items around the mansion. The thugs later let him go, he said.
The murder trial heard evidence that Mansell's four-wheel drive was later found burnt out in bush inside which were the remains of a hammer.
Mansell had camped in bushland after the killing and later flew interstate before being found camping in Queensland rainforest and being extradited back to WA by police.
His lawyers had claimed at the trial that he had been in fear for his own life as a result of what he had witnessed to Mr Puddy.
Mr Puddy's family held a memorial service earlier this month to shift focus on to celebrating the businessman's life.