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Lo trial begins

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By Meg Kennedy

Accused murderer Yu Tung ‘Tracey’ Lo had text messaged friends on her phone that she planned “to kill someone”, the Supreme Court of Victoria has heard.
A jury was empanelled, and witnesses gave evidence last week at the trial of Ms Lo who appeared before Justice Jane Dixon, charged with the murder of Bacchus Marsh man Paul Hogan outside his home in Labilliere street Bacchus Marsh in May 2016.
The accused, flanked by police either side of her, appeared emotionless as witnesses recounted their involvement with Ms Lo.
Two witnesses told the court they had met Ms Lo through a mobile phone app known as ‘WeChat’, and Ms Lo had text messaged one of the two men that she planned “to kill someone in the brain”.
Another witness, a former work colleague of the accused, said Ms Lo stated she was sick of Mr Hogan and “wanted him dead”.
“I just thought she was overreacting,” witness Rae, told the court.
Defence barrister Peter Chadwick QC described Ms Lo as using “colourful language” and “not shy in expressing her opinions” in his opening statement to the jury, reciting lyrics from 70s rock band the Bee Gees, “It’s only words”.
Ms Lo had been living with Mr Hogan at the Labilliere street property for just under a month before his death, and the two were planning to marry.
Mark Davies, a marriage celebrant who was preparing the couple’s pending marriage, told the court Mr Hogan had been “uncomfortable” with Ms Lo finding out his age.
Ms Lo and Mr Hogan had signed important pre-ceremony documents prior to the incident, and Davis told the court he was “satisfied nobody was being forced into marriage”.
Three witnesses told the court that Ms Lo had asked if she could move in with them in the days prior to Mr Hogan’s death.
Ms Lo had contacted an Airbnb host about accommodation on the night before the murder.
The host told the court Ms Lo had written to her, writing that she was living with “someone who is abusing me”.
On the morning of Mr Hogan’s death, Ms Lo was seen waiting outside the house with all her belongings by multiple witnesses.
The pair had allegedly argued the night before about text messages on Ms Lo’s phone found by Hogan, according to witness Peter Hughes, the housemate who lived with Hogan and Lo at the time of the incident.
Paul Hogan was found dead in his white van with a single gunshot wound to his head at around 8:20am on Tuesday, May 24, 2016.
The hearing continues in the Supreme Court this week.