FINANCIAL concerns were at the centre of the murder case against Walcha-accused Natasha Beth Darcy as the trial entered its third day.
Lance Partridge, an old family-friend and executor of the estate for deceased grazier Mathew Dunbar was present the day the 42-year-old made Darcy the sole beneficiary of his $3.5 million property, Pandora.
The jury in the NSW Supreme Court heard on Tuesday that relationship problems unfolded between the couple when Mr Dunbar became concerned about the "spending of his partner", while the defence questioned the witness on whether Mr Dunbar was a spendthrift.
Darcy is accused of Googling 'how to commit murder', poisonous mushrooms and lethal injections before she allegedly sedated and gassed her partner in the bedroom at his property in Walcha on August 2, 2017. She has pleaded not guilty to murder.
Mr Partridge is a wool classer and a crucial witnesses in the case, having been involved with the Dunbar family for more than two decades.
He told the jury Mr Dunbar had called him distressed in 2017 about an argument with Darcy over a local girl he had lent money to.
"Natasha had accused him of having an affair with this girl; he said that couldn't be possible because she was living in Townsville, he had lent her money and she had since paid it back," Mr Partridge said.
"He said he had a gun and he was going out with a gun and it would be the last time that he left Pandora.
"One of his main concerns was a cash flow problem, he was very concerned about the relationship with his partner and her husband [Colin Crossman] and he was generally upset that he wasn't getting the family life he had hoped of. He said Natasha was still happily married to her husband.
"I did know about the nature of the financial problems but the main thing was the spending of his partner."
The court heard Mr Dunbar was neglecting his stock as the unpaid bills piled up.
Mr Dunbar's "over-generous" nature was questioned by both Crown prosecutor Brett Hatfield and defence barrister Janet Manuell SC.
A jury heard Mr Dunbar had made $1 million on the sale of Gidley, another family property in Walcha.
The court heard Mr Dunbar had spent more than $160,000 on a new tractor, which Mr Partridge thought was unnecessary for the farm.
"But you were concerned he was spending unnecessary amounts of money?" Ms Manuell said.
"On the tractor yes but that was his decision, he really wanted that and he loved that tractor," Mr Partridge replied.
He will return to the stand on Wednesday.
Wool agent Brian Angus Carter was called to the stand on Tuesday and told the court Mr Dunbar ignored him for three months after he warned him about his relationship with Darcy in 2016 - a year before Mr Dunbar's death.
The trial continues.
Our journalists work hard to provide local, up-to-date news to the community. This is how you can access our trusted content: