The West

Mercanti doomed partner to abuse
Troy Mercanti.

Troy Mercanti has started trial on allegations he repeatedly assaulted long-time partner Tammy Kingdon in a relationship that had allegedly "doomed" her to years of abuse at the motorcycle club member's hands.

Mr Mercanti has pleaded not guilty to five charges stemming from alleged beatings from 1997 to 2012 that the prosecutor claims left her with injuries ranging from bruising, a knocked out tooth, fractured ribs and a fractured eye socket.

Mr Mercanti's defence lawyer Colin Lovitt QC has suggested in his opening address to the District Court jury that Ms Kingdon had for years enjoyed the notoriety and lavish lifestyle Mr Mercanti had provided her on the back of his role with Coffin Cheaters and now The Finks motorcycle clubs.

But her attraction to him had waned after 15 years and she made up the allegations as an easier way of leaving Mr Mercanti with her two children, Mr Lovitt suggested.

Prosecutor Justin Whalley this morning told the jury in his opening address that Mr Mercanti's relationship with Ms Kingdon had been a domineering and controlling one in which she had been subjected to violent bashings.

Mr Whalley said that Ms Kingdon's decision to strike up a relationship with the motorcycle club member when she was a teenager had doomed her to years of physical and emotional abuse before she left the family home for the last time in 2012.

The prosecutor said the jury would hear evidence of her alleged injuries and witness accounts from neighbours who had allegedly seen her cowering and asking for help on occasions. The jury would also hear medical evidence of injuries she had suffered, he said.

The court was told the charges included an incident on Christmas Day on 2006 in which Mr Mercanti is accused of knocking out one of her teeth at a family gathering at his parents' home.

Another incident had seen Mr Mercanti instruct Ms Kingdon to stand naked on the front lawn between subjecting her to "windmill punches" inside their Duncraig home.

Mr Whalley said Ms Kingdon had once planned to run to police but had lost her nerve. Eventually, in 2012, she had realised "she was never going to be allowed to leave by the accused man" and went to police while Mr Mercanti was interstate.

Mr Lovitt told the jury his client had loved Ms Kingdon and that they had shared a volatile relationship full of "fights galore and sex galore" in which making up was often the best part.

"In his own way he (Mr Mercanti) loved Tammy Kingdon and they had this amazing on-again off-again relationship," Mr Lovitt said, suggesting they were drawn to one another like moths to a flame.

The barrister suggested Ms Kingdon was an attention seeker who had been happy to lap up the notoriety and lifestyle offered by the relationship.

"She would have Versace clothing and she loved it," Mr Lovitt said. "She lapped it up and kept coming back for more."

She later made up the allegations of assault to leave her partner, the barrister said, suggesting she was by this stage having sex with other men and was no longer as attracted to a relationship with Mr Mercanti whom she knew would not make it easy for her to leave with their sons.

Mr Mercanti has been charged with assault occasioning grievous bodily harm, assault occasioning bodily harm and three counts of aggravated assault occasioning bodily harm.

The trial continues.

The West Australian

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