Gable Tostee murder trial: Mother of Kiwi victim Warriena Wright to attend

By Kim Stephens, Candace Sutton

The family of Warriena Wright, 26, who fell to her death two years ago will attend the murder trial of Gable Tostee in Brisbane. Photo / Queensland Police
The family of Warriena Wright, 26, who fell to her death two years ago will attend the murder trial of Gable Tostee in Brisbane. Photo / Queensland Police

The lives of Warriena Wright and Gable Tostee crossed paths for only a few short hours in August 2014.

But their names will forever be inextricably linked - and perhaps never more so than this week.

More than two years after Wright plunged to her death from the balcony of Tostee's 14th floor Gold Coast apartment, he will today go on trial for her murder in the Brisbane Supreme Court.

The 30-year-old vehemently denies killing the young New Zealand tourist.

Gable Tostee denies throwing Warriena Wright from a balcony after their Tinder date. Photo / Facebook
Gable Tostee denies throwing Warriena Wright from a balcony after their Tinder date. Photo / Facebook

Wright, known as Rrie to her friends and family, was in Queensland for a friend's wedding in 2014, when her path fatefully crossed that of Tostee's.

The young New Zealander framed a two-week Queensland holiday around the occasion and travelled to the Gold Coast, just before she was to return home.

Tragically, she never made it after she matched with Tostee on the mobile dating app Tinder.

The pair met outside a surf shop in the Surfers Paradise nightclub precinct of Cavill Mall on the evening of August 7 and returned to the nearby Avalon apartments, where Tostee lived alone in an apartment on the 14th floor.

Within hours, the 26-year-old New Zealander had fallen to her death.

What went on in that apartment in those few hours will be the focus for the jury in this week's trial.

For the two years since her daughter fell to her death, Merzabeth Tagpuno has been building up to this moment.

Warriena's mother and father are believed to be attending the trial. Photo / Queensland Police
Warriena's mother and father are believed to be attending the trial. Photo / Queensland Police

Wright's grieving mother has had a long time to reflect on the 26 years of her eldest daughter's short life.

In tributes on her Facebook page, the Philippines-born New Zealander has relived the precious moments of Warrienna's life and shared intimate family photographs.

In her native Tagalog, Tagpuno has revealed that she will make the journey to Brisbane with Warrienna's father and sister Reza to attend Tostee's trial.

The trial is set to be one of the highest profile in Queensland this year, with Wright's death - and the subsequent revelation of the Tinder link - drawing attention from Australia and abroad at the time.

Crown prosecutors intend to call 22 witnesses, meaning the trial is unlikely to run for more than two weeks

It is not yet known if Tostee plans to take the stand to defend himself against the murder charge.

The 30-year-old has enlisted high profile QC Saul Holt as his defence lawyer.

One of Queensland's most experienced Supreme Court judges, Justice John Byrne, will preside over the case.

Empanelment of jurors is expected to begin as soon as the court sits on Monday morning.

- news.com.au

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