UPDATE – Sarah Ristevski has been named as one of 29 witnesses who will be cross-examined by lawyers representing her father Borce in her mother Karen Ristevski’s murder case, a court heard on Wednesday, according to news.com.au. Her father Borce is charged with killing Karen.
It’s claimed Sarah will also be joined by her stepbrother Anthony Rickard at a committal hearing on July 16.
Borce Ristevski, 54, is charged with murdering his 47-year-old wife on June 29, 2016 – an accusation he has repeatedly denied. While his daughter Sarah has remained largely out of the spotlight throughout the long search for her mother, and then her mother’s killer, it’s now been confirmed she has been named by the prosecution in its case against Borce Ristevski.
Karen, a fashion boutique owner, went missing from her Oakley Drive home in Avondale Heights, Melbourne, in June 2016, and her body was found by a member of the public in bushland in the Mount Macedon Regional Park on February 20, 2017. Her remains were found under a log in the park, but police have not publicly released her cause of death.
Her husband, who was the last person to see Karen alive, told police she left the home to clear her head, but after failing to return the next day, he reported her missing. Ristevski was charged with Karen’s murder in December 2017 and is expected to plead not guilty, according to previous media reports.
The last time Sarah Ristevski appeared on camera was when she spoke to the media in 2016 to plead for information on her mum’s whereabouts. It’s unclear if Sarah will appear in court, or that her evidence will come in the form of a statement.
Meanwhile, despite an application being lodged by the accused man’s defence team for a suppression order, to stop media reporting on the case, it has reportedly since been withdrawn.
His defence team previously claimed there had been “prejudicial and inaccurate” media reports published that could mean Ristevski wouldn’t get a fair trial. His lawyers pointed to several specific media outlets that they had published incorrect reports.
The lawyers cautioned that referring to Sarah as a “prosecution witness” could be, to the general public, quite “misleading”, as the prosecution in a criminal case always “take statements from anybody who’s got any connection with anybody”. That didn’t necessarily mean that the daughter would be giving evidence against her father, they said.
Hundreds of people attended a funeral for Karen in March 2017, where Ristevski was one of the people carrying her coffin.