Jill’s killer: I shouldn’t have been let out of jail

Even Adrian Bayley himself told police he should never have been let out of jail.

Jill’s killer: I shouldn’t have been let out of jail

After spending a decade behind bars, the serial sex offender had been out on parole for two years when he raped and strangled Co Louth woman Jill Meagher in Melbourne, Australia.

“They should never have let me out,” he told police after confessing to the killing. “How many chances does a person need?”

The 41-year-old was on parole after serving eight years for raping five women — his second prison stint for rape — when he dragged Ms Meagher into a dark Brunswick laneway, then raped and murdered her on Sept 22 last year.

Bayley admitted lying in a sexual rehabilitation programme to get parole the first time he was jailed for rape in the early 1990s, his plea hearing in the Victorian Supreme Court heard.

“I basically went through the motions and told them what they wanted to hear,” he said.

Calling for him to be jailed for life, crown prosecutor Gavin Silbert said Bayley’s history of rape began at 18.

At the time of Ms Meagher’s murder, Bayley had been on parole and bail, after appealing a three- month term for recklessly causing serious injury.

Mr Silbert said Bayley murdered Ms Meagher to silence her, knowing he would face a lengthy jail sentence if he was again convicted of rape.

A psychologist, James Ogloff, said Bayley admitted he was “trying to think of a way to get out of things”, even after confessing to strangling Ms Meagher.

He said Bayley, who he diagnosed with borderline personality disorder, was a violent sexual predator who fantasised about assuming a position of power and control over his victims, who he typically blamed for his crimes. He agreed Bayley was a calculating and manipulative man who derived pleasure in inflicting pain on his victims. The court heard Bayley had told one of his rape victims: “Now you’ll do what I want you to do, if you fight, I’ll fight you back”, and “I could dump you in the fucking alley and no one would give a shit”.

Bayley’s lawyer Saul Holt said his client had expressed genuine remorse and true self-loathing, attempting to take his own life while in custody. He said that Bayley had not intended to murder Ms Meagher, strangling her after she became aggressive.

“She resisted and fought back after the rape and she indicated that she would call police,” said Mr Holt.

“When someone lays hands on him... he responds with this level of rage.”

In a letter read to the court, Bayley said he was truly sorry. “I destroyed a precious life,” he said.

Mr Holt said the prosecution’s call for a life sentence without parole was inappropriate because the case was not “on that level of severity”.

“My submission is this is not offending that, even taken in combination with Mr Bayley’s prior convictions... should mean that the key gets thrown away forever,” he said.

Mr Silbert urged Justice Geoffrey Nettle to make no finding of remorse. “He denied until he was trapped into a confession,” he said.

In Jun 1991, Bayley was jailed for five years on six charges including rape and attempted rape against three victims and was out on parole by Feb 1993, the court heard.

In 2002, he was jailed for 11 years for the rape of another five women. He was again granted parole and was back on the streets by Mar 2010, the court heard.

Bayley will be sentenced next Wednesday.

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