Arrest in Australian cold case made famous by podcast

Howard TerryDec 06, 2018

Chris Dawson, the former husband of missing Sydney woman Lynette Dawson, will be extradited from Queensland to New South Wales where he is expected to be charged with her murder.

The 70-year-old was arrested on the Gold Coast this morning and taken to Southport Police Station.

The Teacher's Pet - the podcast made by journalists from The Australian newspaper - details a troubled marriage leading up to the disappearance and scrutinises the police response to it.

Mrs Dawson vanished from her home in Sydney's Northern Beaches in January 1982.

New South Wales police commissioner Mick Fuller, who recently apologised for police failings on the case in the 1980s, said detectives had revisited the disappearance three years ago and a "fresh brief" of evidence had led to the arrest.

"They were predominately statements from witnesses that helped us tie pieces of the puzzle together", he explained.

Speaking on Studio 10 on Wednesday, Lyn's brother Greg Simms - the first of her family to be contacted by police today- said the family were "over the moon" about the arrest.

The body of the mother of two has never been recovered.

A former football star is expected to be charged with the murder of his wife in a case that became a popular crime mystery podcast. He will appear in Parramatta court on the December 6.

Police have been under fire over their handling of the case.

In 2015, NSW Police established Strike Force Scriven to re-investigate the circumstances surrounding Dawson's disappearance and suspected murder.

That evidence came in the form of two additional witness statements described as "corroborative, not crucial" by the head of the Homicide Squad, Detective Superintendent Scott Cook.

For a deep dive into this truly cooked case, listen to the podcast The Teachers Pet here. Image: AAP Police remained at the home for a week.

"We would like to have found the body of Lynette Dawson, not just for the evidence but for the family, and we certainly will not give up on the search", he said.

Dawson, a Newtown rugby league player in the early 1970s, has always been a suspect in the case but denies any involvement in his wife's disappearance.

Chris and Lynette Dawson on their wedding day.

Despite that, Mr Dawson did not report his wife missing for nearly six weeks. "I wouldn't have written to the DPP otherwise", he said.

Earlier this week, the ODPP provided advice to police, and following further inquiries, detectives applied for an arrest warrant before travelling to Queensland, police said.

"We have no doubt whatsoever that Chris will be found not guilty as he is innocent".

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