Ahead of Borce Ristevski's five-week murder trial, and after continuously denying he had anything to do with his wife's murder, Ristevski has pleaded guilty to killing wife Karen and dumping her body in bushland.
Karen went missing in the early hours of June 29, 2016, and her decomposed body was discovered in bushland at Mount Macedon Regional Park eight months later. Ristevski had vehemently maintained his innocence, insisting his 47-year-old wife had left their Avondale Heights home on foot after an argument and never returned.
After she vanished, he was often emotional when speaking of her and his family shared their bizarre theories about what happened to her — including that Karen skipped Australia on a fake passport.
Just days before the murder trial was due to begin, Ristevski made the shocking admission. Ristevski originally told police he only drove the car to get petrol, changing his mind when the faulty fuel gauge showed it wasn’t needed. He claimed he kept driving towards his wife’s dress store Bella Bleu but missed the turn-off so decided to return home. But detectives alleged he lied about his movements and turned off his and Karen’s mobile phones that day to avoid detection.
In the days after Karen went missing, a neighbour told police that “yelling and screaming” could be heard coming from the Ristevski home. As police began to dig into possible motives, they found mountains of debt that had plagued the couple.
On Wednesday, the day before his Supreme Court murder trial was due to commence, Ristevski dramatically confessed and pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of manslaughter.
A pre-sentence hearing is now set down for March 27.