Robert Xie murder trial: Timeline of events

SMH

In 2009, five family members were brutally killed as they slept in their Sydney home.

A man in Sydney, Australia, who maintained his innocence to the last has been found guilty by a Supreme Court jury of bludgeoning five relatives to death in their home.

The majority verdict for Robert Xie came following a six-month re-trial and eight days of deliberations, after which the jury returned a majority verdict.

The 53-year-old faces life behind bars after spending more than five years accused of killing the relatives of his wife Kathy Lin. 

READ MORE:
* Robert Xie found guilty of killing relatives
* Kathy Lin has always stood by her husband

Robert Xie is escorted to a prison truck after being found guilty of murder on 12 Jan 2017 in Sydney, Australia.
Daniel Munoz/SMH

Robert Xie is escorted to a prison truck after being found guilty of murder on 12 Jan 2017 in Sydney, Australia.

LIN FAMILY KILLINGS: A TIMELINE

July 18, 2009 – Sydney newsagent Min Lin (aged 45), Lin's wife Yun Li "Lily" Lin (44), their children Henry (12) and Terry (9), and Lily's sister Yun Bin "Irene" Lin (39), are found dead in their North Epping home.

Lin's sister Kathy and her husband Robert Xie go to the house before breakfast, after they receive phone calls to say the family newsagency has not opened for the day. They discover the bodies, which have been bashed so badly they are almost beyond recognition.

Detectives at the Lin family house in north Sydney, July 2009.
Jacky Ghossein/SMH

Detectives at the Lin family house in north Sydney, July 2009.

July 29, 2009 – Kathy Lin and Robert Xie make a public appeal for information about the killings.

August 8, 2009 – A large public funeral is held for the Lin family.

May 2010 – Kathy Lin is interviewed by the NSW Crime Commission, where she is told police have found shoe prints from an ASICS sneaker at the North Epping home.

Grieving family members of the late Lin family speak during the public funeral  on 8 Aug 2009.
Sergio Dionisio/Getty Images

Grieving family members of the late Lin family speak during the public funeral on 8 Aug 2009.

Police surveillance later allegedly captures Xie cutting up and disposing of shoe boxes.

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May 5, 2011 – Xie is arrested and charged with five counts of murder. Police tell the media that he emerged as their prime suspect about six months after the killings.

December 22, 2011 – Xie makes an unsuccessful bail application, and remains behind bars.

Mourners line up to pay respect to the Lin family during the public funeral on 8 Aug 2009.
Sergio Dionisio/Getty Images

Mourners line up to pay respect to the Lin family during the public funeral on 8 Aug 2009.

February 10, 2012 – The Lin family house is listed for sale.

March 29, 2012 – Xie again applies for bail in the NSW Supreme Court.

Police reveal they believe the boys woke up during the attacks, and they were likely killed because they saw Xie and could identify him.

Kathy Lin's parents, Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu arrive at the murder trial of Robert Xie, 21 May 2014.
Brendan Esposito/SMH

Kathy Lin's parents, Yang Fei Lin and Feng Qing Zhu arrive at the murder trial of Robert Xie, 21 May 2014.

April 5, 2012 – Justice Derek Price denies bail, but acknowledges a jury may find there is not enough evidence to convict him.

August 20, 2012 – Xie faces a committal hearing in Central Local Court.

December 19, 2012 – Xie is committed to stand trial for the murders, and his lawyer again applies for bail.

Kathy Lin leaves the Robert Xie bail hearing after his bail is granted on 8 Dec 2015.
Ben Rushton/SMH

Kathy Lin leaves the Robert Xie bail hearing after his bail is granted on 8 Dec 2015.

December 20, 2012 – Xie is granted bail by local court magistrate John Andrews, who says the Crown case is not strong. But the prosecution says it will appeal the decision, and Xie is not released.

December 21, 2012 – An appeal on the bail decision is heard in the NSW Supreme Court.

December 24, 2012 – Xie is denied bail by Justice Stephen Rothman.

Robert Xie arrives home with wife Kathy Lin after being granted bail on 11 Dec 2015.
Anthony Johnson/SMH

Robert Xie arrives home with wife Kathy Lin after being granted bail on 11 Dec 2015.

February 1, 2013 – In the NSW Supreme Court, Xie pleads not guilty for the first time.

July 22, 2013 – Xie's September trial date is vacated and delayed until 2014.

May 8, 2014 – Xie's trial begins. A jury is told he allegedly made confessions to a fellow prison inmate.

Robert Xie arrives home with wife Kathy Lin after being granted bail on 11 Dec 2015.
Anthony Johnson/SMH

Robert Xie arrives home with wife Kathy Lin after being granted bail on 11 Dec 2015.

June 10, 2014 – The trial is aborted, after new evidence comes to light.

August 5, 2014 – Xie's second trial begins, and the jury hear evidence of an alleged sexual motive, which cannot be revealed due to non-publication orders.

September 23, 2014 – The trial is aborted, after the trial judge Justice Peter Johnson falls ill.

Robert Xie is released from Silverwater jail on conditional bail, 11 Dec 2015.
Edwina Pickles/SMH

Robert Xie is released from Silverwater jail on conditional bail, 11 Dec 2015.

October 13, 2014 – Xie is again refused bail.

February 4, 2015 – Xie's third trial begins.

November 12, 2015 – The jury begin their deliberations, having been told they will be put up in a hotel in order to maintain their focus.

Robert Xie leaves court after his third trial results in a hung jury, 1 Dec 2015.
Nick Moir/SMH

Robert Xie leaves court after his third trial results in a hung jury, 1 Dec 2015.

December 1, 2015 – The jury tells the court they cannot reach a verdict.

December 8, 2015 – Xie is granted bail, after spending four years and seven months in jail without a conviction.

June 29, 2016 – Xie's fourth trial begins, with new defence barristers and prosecutors.

Kathy Lin departs the Supreme Court on 30 Nov 2015 after no verdict is reached.
Wolter Peeters/SMH

Kathy Lin departs the Supreme Court on 30 Nov 2015 after no verdict is reached.

December, 2016 – Xie is taken back into custody for the final days of the trial, and the jury's deliberation.

January 12, 2017 – Xie is found guilty of five counts of murder.

Robert Xie, 53, faces a life sentence.
SMH

Robert Xie, 53, faces a life sentence.

 - Sydney Morning Herald

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