‘Karen Matthews’ plot doesn’t make sense’
Frances Oldham QC said: “You may well determine a time when she (Matthews) lied, but was she involved in the plan and execution from moment one? That’s the nub of it. It’s a matter for you to say whether you are sure that the woman June Batley saw outside her address was Karen Matthews, or was she merely identifying Karen Matthews from photos and news reels that she had seen.
She added: “The notion Karen Mathews and Craig Meehan could control and manipulate the press is a complete nonsense. That would be giving a lesson to the like of Max Clifford, it doesn’t make sense.”
Speaking about the 999 call Matthews made the day Shannon went missing, Mrs Oldham said: “Is that an Oscar winning performance or do you hear the panic in her voice and see the panic in her eyes on that television appeal?”
She also spoke about a time when Shannon’s picture was on television during the search for her. Matthews had pointed at the screen and said to one of her children: ‘Look, she’s famous.’
“Isn’t that a pathetic reflection not of a manipulative devious liar, but someone who has been finding it very difficult to cope with things as they were unfolding,” said Mrs Oldham.
She added that Matthews’ five versions of events showed that she was trying to protect Mr Meehan, before finally asking the jury to consider what Michael Donovan’s motive was.
Matthews, 33, and Donovan, 40, are accused of kidnap, false imprisonment and perverting the course of justice in connection with Shannon’s disappearance in February.
Both deny the charges.
The trial continues.