Peter Milton Walker and his daughter-in-law Jessica Ann Groff were extradited from NSW and arrested over the alleged gold heist.
Peter Milton Walker and his daughter-in-law Jessica Ann Groff were extradited from NSW and arrested over the alleged gold heist.

$1m gold heist accused out of jail for Christmas

THE father allegedly embroiled in a $1 million family-run gold heist will spend Christmas at home after his daughter stumped up a cash surety in exchange for his release.

Peter Milton Walker, 70, was arrested on outstanding warrants and extradited from Ballina to the Sunshine Coast in July this year along with daughter-in-law Jessica Ann Groff.

The pair and Mr Walker's son Chris Walker will face fraud charges for allegedly playing a role in a fraud scheme that left a Papua New Guinea man swindled out of nearly $1 million worth of gold.

 

Jessica Ann Groff and Peter Milton Walker were extradited from NSW earlier this year, while Chris Walker was arrested in Queensland.
Jessica Ann Groff and Peter Milton Walker were extradited from NSW earlier this year, while Chris Walker was arrested in Queensland.

At Brisbane Supreme Court on Tuesday, the Crown alleged the "main protagonist" was Chris Walker but that his father should remain behind bars because he was a high flight risk.

The court was told Mr Walker had fled to NSW and tried to evade police in a caravan park before his extradition.

Accused gold scammers arrested six years after alleged heist

Chris Walker was arrested on November 18 last year in Queensland and is currently on bail.

But Mr Walker's defence lawyer Faye Austen-Brown argued the case against Mr Walker was not strong - which the Crown quibbled with - and that none of the evidence showed Mr Walker was there when the gold allegedly changed hands.

Ms Austen-Brown said at 70 years old and with "significant" health issues, Mr Walker was not going anywhere.

"He has got good family support," she said

"His daughter is before the court today. She instructs she's going to keep an eye on him."

The court was told the case was a "historical and complex" matter that would take at least 12 months to finalise.

Justice Soraya Ryan agreed to grant Mr Walker bail on condition he not contact his son or daughter-in-law and that he reports to police daily.

- NewsRegional