Homicide Squad detectives extradite man from Aruba over Coogee murder

Homicide Squad detectives have extradited a man from an island in the Caribbean and charged him over the alleged murder of a woman at Coogee earlier this year.

About 10am on Tuesday 14 January 2020, officers from Eastern Beaches Police Area Command were called to a unit on Mount Street, Coogee, after the body of a woman was found inside.

The woman was formally identified as 69-year-old Kimberley McRae and a post mortem examination indicated her death was suspicious.

Detectives from the State Crime Command’s Homicide Squad established Strike Force Onshore to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death.

Following extensive inquiries, detectives applied for and were granted an arrest warrant for a 20-year-old man, who they believed had travelled overseas, in February this year.

On Wednesday 26 February 2020, the man was arrested by officers from the Korps Politie Aruba (Aruba Police Force) in Aruba – a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands – pursuant to the Australian provisional arrest warrant request.

The man was held in Aruban custody as Homicide Squad detectives worked with Commonwealth partner agencies to seek his extradition to Australia.

Last week, strike force detectives travelled to Aruba, where the man – now aged 21 – was released into their custody to be escorted back to New South Wales.

Their flight arrived at Sydney International Airport earlier today (Tuesday 24 November 2020), and the man was taken to Surry Hills Police Station, where he was charged with an outstanding warrant for murder.

The man, who is a Columbian national, was refused bail to appear at Central Local Court via AVL today (Tuesday 24 November 2020).

Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Danny Doherty, said detectives have worked tirelessly to ensure justice is served for Kimberley and her family.

“Today’s result could not have been achieved without the assistance and support of our international law enforcement partner agencies – particularly the Korps Politie Aruba (Aruba Police Force) and the Australian Federal Police,” Det Supt Doherty said.

“This has been a difficult and complex investigation for detectives, who have spent months liaising with our partners to safely navigate the challenges and restrictions impacting worldwide travel due to COVID-19.

“The four Homicide Squad detectives who travelled to Aruba have now commenced their 14-day isolation in hotel quarantine and will undergo all necessary COVID-19 health checks before returning to work,” Det Supt Doherty said.

The NSW Police Force wish to extend their sincere appreciation to all agencies who assisted Strike Force Onshore detectives throughout the investigation, including;

  • Korps Politie Aruba (Aruba Police Force)
  • Commonwealth Attorney General’s Department
  • Australian Federal Police
  • Australian Federal Police International Command (Liaison Officers in South America and North America)
  • U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • U.S. Customs and Border Protection

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