Wendy Evans was the only person with a clear motive for wanting slain Wollongong solicitor Katie Foreman dead, the lawyer for one of her co-accused has said.
Barrister Winston Terracini, SC, argued Evans's vitriolic hatred of Ms Foreman, whom she discovered had been sleeping with her former boyfriend, Scott Field, prompted her to manipulate her three co-accused into helping her organise and carry out Ms Foreman's murder by torching her house early on October 27, 2011.
Mr Terracini said his client, Ms Foreman's estranged boyfriend Bradley Max Rawlinson, was not the ring leader of the alleged murder plot, as suggested by the Crown, but simply a pawn in Evans's own plans to kill.
"Who had the motive? Who hated the deceased? Who wanted to bash her?" Mr Terracini asked rhetorically during his closing address to jurors on Friday.
"One person had the hate, and that was Wendy Evans."
Mr Terracini said jurors had heard evidence from Evans's former work colleagues, who recalled Evans being furious when she found out Ms Foreman had slept with Mr Field, whom she had considered the love of her life.
Mr Terracini pointed to one comment Evans made to a colleague - "Katie might be able to organise cocaine, but I can organise a bullet" - as an example of the strong hatred she felt towards Ms Foreman.
He also pointed to evidence from several witnesses about their impressions of Evans, leading him to conclude many people had found Evans to be "aggressive, spiteful, vicious and, in some instances, an extremely violent woman".
In contrast, witnesses described Rawlinson as a non-violent man who was "too much of a nice guy".
Ms Foreman's parents gave evidence saying Rawlinson appeared to be attentive to their daughter, and they had gotten on well with him.
Mr Terracini conceded Rawlinson had lied to several people both before and after Ms Foreman's death about the state of their relationship, but dismissed it largely as Rawlinson trying to "talk himself up" in front of others.
He also conceded Rawlinson had lied to police during the investigation. However, he said this was not because he was involved in a plot to murder Ms Foreman, but because he knew he was involved in an agreement to scare her, "and obviously it had gone terribly wrong and outside what he had agreed to".
He said Rawlinson had pleaded guilty to manslaughter, which involved him admitting to wanting Ms Foreman scared, and in doing so, contemplated that some harm would come to her, but reminded jurors that that was "a long way from foreseeing she would be burnt to death".
The person who knew what was going to happen to Ms Foreman that night was Wendy Evans.
"If you assess this woman, you will be satisfied beyond any doubt she was the prime mover, she was the one in control, she had the hatred, the jealousy, the envy, and she wanted others to be a party to it, because she couldn't do it [all] herself," Mr Terracini said.