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Judge rules Sharon Graham to get separate trial from partner Gregory Roser over alleged murder plot

A woman accused of plotting the murder of her former partner, whose body was fed into a woodchipper, will be judged separately to her partner who is also charged with the murder, after the judge decided he was asking too much of the jury.

Sharon Graham and her partner, Gregory Roser, were charged with the murder of 54-year-old Bruce Saunders, who died while tree lopping at a property in Goomboorian near Gympie in November 2017.

The pair were being tried together at the Supreme Court and pleaded not guilty last week.

Supreme Court Justice Martin Burns told the jury they would now only need to consider Mr Roser's matter.

"Sometimes it is asking too much of a jury to expect that you can give separate consideration to the respective cases," Judge Burns said.

"That would be where there is just so much evidence that you need to put it out of your minds, especially when some of the evidence is prejudicial, that to ask you to give the cases separate consideration would be asking you to perform impossible mental gymnastics."

Ms Graham, 61, was remanded in custody, with a date for a new trial to be reviewed on October 21.

The prosecution has alleged Mr Roser killed Mr Saunders before he and another man, Peter Koenig, put his body in the woodchipper, at the request of Ms Graham who stood to benefit from his $750,000 life insurance policy.

Ms Graham has denied she instructed anyone to murder her former partner.

Mr Roser's lawyer has previously told the court his client has accepted there was a plot, but has accused Mr Koenig of carrying out the killing.

Mr Koenig was called to testify before the jury and said he had known Ms Graham through previously having an intimate relationship with her, Mr Saunders through work contacts, and Mr Roser through the couple.

He was present in 2017 when Ms Graham introduced Mr Roser to Mr Saunders, her partner at the time, as "Roger".

Mr Koenig testified Ms Graham and Mr Roser met him at a motel in Gympie in October 2018 and told him of their plan to kill Mr Saunders for his life insurance money.

"I said 'yes, I'd help' but I never planned to kill them — I just wanted to keep them happy," Mr Koenig said.

He said the pair told him they planned to use a woodchipper to murder Mr Saunders when clearing trees from a property.

Mr Koenig said a short time later, he, Mr Roser, and two others cleared trees from said property and then returned to Ms Graham's house to stay the night before returning to finish clearing.

Mr Koenig told the court when Mr Saunders was in the shower, Ms Graham questioned him and Mr Roser why the murder had not been carried out.

"She was asking what was going on, why hadn't it happened yet. Greg [Roser] said the machine was playing up and there was too many people around, as in neighbours," he said.

"She said to both of us, 'well it's got to be done'."

At an earlier date, Mr Koenig said Ms Graham and Mr Roser knew he had a .22 calibre handgun and met him at motel in Gympie asking to borrow it.

"She asked me if I still had it and I said yes — she wanted to give it to Greg Roser to shoot rabbits," he said.

"I gave them the gun and the ammo in a carrier bag — the gun was loaded with six bullets.

"They gave it back after maybe a fortnight and one of them said the gun was too noisy, and there were two shots missing."

The trial continues.

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