A Braybrook man who assisted in covering up the brutal murder of a Melton woman in 2015 has been sentenced in the Supreme Court to four years’ jail.

Luke Marmo pleaded guilty to assisting his friend, Brendan Neil, and cousin Wayne Marmo in covering up the murder of Simone Quinlan in August, 2015.

Neil was sentenced to 26 years in prison and Wayne Marmo 24 years for Ms Quinlan’s murder in December, 2017.

The court heard that all three men and
Ms Quinlan were heavy users of the drug ice and that Neil and Ms Quinlan were in an abusive relationship.

On the night of August 25, 2015, Neil violently assaulted Ms Quinlan at their Melton property in the presence of Wayne Marmo and two other witnesses. Neil called Luke Marmo about 5pm and asked him to attend the property.

Luke Marmo briefly visited the property before leaving and returning later that night with a jerry can of petrol.

While it is not known whether Ms Quinlan was dead at the time, the three men wrapped her body in a blanket and loaded her into the back of a ute, along with the jerry can and a sawn-off rifle.

Luke Marmo then drove Neil to a nearby pub to be captured on CCTV footage, while Wayne Marmo, who became concerned that
Ms Quinlan might not have been dead, fired shots into her head from the rifle before dumping her body in a mineshaft in Kangaroo Flat and incinerating the body with the petrol. Luke Marmo burnt the clothes he was wearing that night and returned to the Melton property the next day to help Neil sand blood stains out of the floorboards.

In handing down the sentence, Justice Jane Dixon said the actions of Luke Marmo were gravely serious and deserved a significant penalty.

“You gave assistance in concealing a bad instance of murder and had a degree of direct knowledge about the assault on Simone Quinlan,” Justice Dixon said.

“There is no evidence before me that you were coerced into providing assistance. You assisted Brendan Neil over the course of a number of hours on the evening of the murder, and returned the next day to further conceal the crime.

“Your moral culpability is increased by the absence of any mitigating explanation for your involvement. You acted from a misguided loyalty to Brendan Neil and Wayne Marmo, despite knowledge of the appalling crime committed against Simone Quinlan.”

Luke Marmo will serve a non-parole period of two years, with 291 days already served in pre-trial detention.