Lin family killings: trauma so severe police thought gun had been used, Robert Xie trial hears

Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu at the Lin family funeral in 2009. Photo: Lee Besford Jie “Jimmy” Hua, who worked at the Lin family newsagency, leaves the Supreme Court after giving evidence in Sydney on Wednesday. Photo: Chris Pearce

Lian Bin “Robert” Xie and his wife Kathy Lin in a file picture. Photo: Danielle Smith

Two police officers who responded to a triple-0 call at the Lin family home have described how they discovered the five severely traumatised bodies surrounded by blood spatter.

Sergeant Lachlan Kirby told the NSW Supreme Court that the injuries to the victims’ faces were so extensive that “I thought a shotgun had been used”.

Giving evidence in the murder trial of Lian Bin “Robert” Xie on Thursday, Sergeant  Kirby recalled how upon his arrival at the North Epping home, Kathy Lin told him, “I think my brother is dead inside”.

He and his colleague Senior Constable Robert Levins drew their weapons and went upstairs, where they looked in each of the bedrooms.

Sergeant Kirby said that in the second bedroom, he saw a woman slumped against the wall with long black hair covering her face, which had sustained extensive trauma, and blood spatter on the walls.

Senior Constable Levins said he pushed open the door of the master bedroom with his foot and saw a half-naked female body lying on a bed, her face covered in blood.

Sergeant Kirby said he initially thought that body was male as the attack had been so extensive “I couldn’t see any facial features”.

The officers also found the bodies of two boys in a third bedroom but they did not see Mr Lin’s body, as it was hidden under a doona.

Mr Xie, 50, is accused of bludgeoning and strangling Min ‘‘Norman’’ Lin, 45, his wife Yun Li “Lily” Lin, 44, their sons Henry, 12, and Terry, 9, and Ms Lin’s sister, Yun Bin “Irene” Lin, 39, in their Boundary Road home in the early hours of July 18, 2009.

Earlier on Thursday, the court heard Mr Lin’s parents wanted the member of his family who was not killed to live with them, not with their daughter Kathy Lin and Mr Xie.

Jie “Jimmy” Hua, who had worked at the Epping Central Newsagency in the years leading up to the deaths, told Mr Xie’s trial that in the months after the deaths of the family, there was tension between Min and Kathy’s parents, Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu, and Kathy and Robert over who would take care of the surviving relative.

Under cross-examination by Mr Xie’s counsel, Graham Turnbull, SC, Mr Hua agreed that Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu did not want the relative to live with Mr Xie because “he was not a Lin”.

Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu lived partly in China and partly in Merrylands in Sydney.

Mr Hua also said Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu were critical of the way Robert and Kathy ran the newsagency after they took over the business following the deaths of Mr Lin and his family.

This was in contrast to the relationships between the various family members before the killings, when everyone seemed to get along and be supportive of each other, he said.

Under questioning from senior Crown prosecutor Mark Tedeschi, QC, Mr Hua said he “never” saw the five family members bleeding inside the newsagency near some boxes.

He also said he did not see blood inside the van Mr Lin used to make deliveries.

The trial continues.

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