A NSW prison officer accused of plotting to murder her husband by incineration or gassing says he was abusive and an excessive gambler.
Sharon Yarnton appeared by video link in Burwood Local Court on Monday as her lawyer Winston Terracini SC made an application to cross examine witnesses.
Mr Terracini sought to question alleged victim Dean Yarnton, also a prison officer, and a couple the Yarntons knew over allegations of Mr Yarnton's "intemperate gambling", violent abuse and the breakdown of their marriage.
The court heard the allegations came from Sharon Yarnton and others including one witness who alleged the couple fought constantly over money, that there were poker games on the computer screen at their home and that the couple discussed divorce.
The witness accused Mr Yarnton of controlling behaviour, including checking every cent his wife spent and telling her she wasted money when she bought extra milk.
Mr Terracini said the defence needed Mr Yarnton's answers to the allegations ahead of any trial so they could properly prepare for it.
He also wanted to question Christine and Craig Osland over allegations Sharon Yarnton spiked her husband's drink on the night of the alleged murder attempt.
As well, Mr Terracini wanted to explore claims Sharon Yarnton sent Facebook and text messages to Ms Osland that allegedly said, "what goes around comes around" and "karma will get you".
However, Magistrate Michelle Goodwin refused Mr Terracini's application, saying he hadn't presented substantial or special reasons to support it.
Dean Yarnton awoke in the passenger seat of his car in the early hours of February 1, 2015, to find himself surrounded by two LPG cylinders at Georges River National Park in Sydney's southwest.
His feet were wet and there was fuel in and on the car.
His wife was charged with attempted murder and it is also alleged she recruited 23-year-old Monique Hayes and 22-year-old Fady Houda to help carry out the plot.
A committal hearing for the accused trio has been scheduled for May 20.