'Yeah I did it': Cowan confession
Undercover police video shows the moment Brett Peter Cowan confesses to killing Daniel Morcombe. WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT.PT6M37S http://www.canberratimes.com.au/action/externalEmbeddedPlayer?id=d-33kw3 620 349 February 27, 2014
"Yeah, I did it."
Brett Peter Cowan's confession to Daniel Morcombe's murder has been heard in detail in Brisbane's Supreme Court for the first time.
The trap was set in the Swan River Room of Perth's luxury Hyatt Hotel on August 9, 2011.
Bruce and Denise Morcombe were in court when a recording Brett Peter Cowan's confession was played. Photo: Harrison Saragossi
Mr Cowan was taken to the hotel to meet with a man named "Arnold", whom he believed to be the boss of a powerful, national crime syndicate.
Arnold was in fact undercover police operative 483. The hotel room was bugged.
Mr Cowan was told the crime gang was about to secure a $1 million drug deal.
Brett Peter Cowan listens to evidence in Brisbane's Supreme Court. Photo: Nine News
He wanted in.
But Arnold had learned that Mr Cowan was a prime suspect in Daniel's abduction and murder.
A video recording of Mr Cowan's conversation with Arnold was played to the court on Thursday.
Murdered schoolboy Daniel Morcombe. Photo: Supplied
"Is there something you need to tell me?" Arnold asked Mr Cowan.
"I'm told that you've done the Daniel Morcombe murder. I'm told that the police said you're the one that's done it.
"I can sort this for you ... but I need to know what I need to do."
Mr Cowan replied: "Yeah, I did it ... I seen him standing there, I did a loop around."
Mr Cowan said he was returning home after collecting a mechanical mulcher when he spotted a broken down bus on the side of the road.
"Then I seen Daniel," Mr Cowan said.
Arnold: "So you seen him on the side of the road?"
Mr Cowan: "I went up around and parked in the church car park. My car was never on the road ... it was not sittin' on the highway at all."
Mr Cowan said he walked to the bus stop under the Kiel Mountain Road overpass and stood behind Daniel.
"I didn't talk to him at all when I got there ... made out I was waiting for the bus," Mr Cowan said.
The bus drove past, he said.
"That's when I said, 'I'm going down to the shopping centre, do you want a lift?'"
Daniel accepted, he said.
"Instead of taking him to the shopping centre, I took him to a secluded spot that I knew of," Mr Cowan said.
Arnold said: "I'm not judging at all you know, just tell me what I need to hear."
Mr Cowan sat expressionless in the dock, watching the tape on a small screen in front of him. Daniel's parents Bruce and Denise sat metres away, with their eyes steadfastly fixed on another screen in the courtroom.
The court heard Mr Cowan went on to say that he took Daniel to an abandoned house at the end of Roys Road in Beerwah.
"So you took him to the house, what happened in the house?" Arnold asked.
Mr Cowan: "I never got to molest him or anything like that, I panicked and he panicked and I grabbed him around the throat and before I knew it he was dead."
Mr Cowan said he put Daniel's body in the back his white four-wheel-drive and drove him to an overgrown, old sand mining site about 150 metres away.
"I've stripped him off ... thrown his clothes in the creek," Mr Cowan said.
Mr Cowan said he left Daniel's body covered trees and branches.
He said he visited his drug dealer's house before returning home.
“Went home, went inside, said g'day to my wife, told her I was back and went out and started chipping the timber," Mr Cowan said.
Mr Cowan said he went back to the place where he left Daniel's body "about a week later" with a shovel.
"Went down to where I put him and only found a fragment of bone, the rest of it was gone … in a week," he said.
"You could tell like there was some … fat on the ground.
"There was a lot of yabbies and animals and that sort of thing."
Mr Cowan said he broke up the bone fragment with the shovel and buried it.
The trial continues.