A man was tortured to death at a Newnham unit on New Year's Day in 2017 after a failed attempt to extract information from him about a stolen car, a court has heard.
Mark Rodney Jones has pleaded not guilty to murdering Bradley Breward at the Parklands Parade property.
During his opening address in the Launceston Supreme Court, Director of Public Prosecutions Daryl Coates said the accused punched, kicked, waterboarded and repeatedly suffocated Mr Breward with a plastic bag while interrogating him about the stolen car.
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Mr Jones and his employee Ricky Izard went to the Newnham unit wearing masks and gloves after being tipped off about Mr Breward's location.
Mr Breward was of no fixed address and would sleep at friends' houses, but the court was told the alleged victim's temporary accommodation address was given to Mr Jones by Tina Robertson in exchange for $1000.
Ms Robertson allegedly didn't like Mr Breward because he owed her money.
The two men tied Mr Breward's hands and ankles with tape and began torturing him while questioning him about the car, the court heard.
Despite Mr Breward being laid on his back on the couch, a cloth placed over his face and water poured over his mouth for 10 to 15-second intervals, he didn't give Mr Jones any information.
Mr Jones then held a plastic bag over the 22-year-old's head for 40 seconds before taking it off, the court was told. The court heard Mr Breward told Mr Jones he was dying, but the plastic bag was again put over his head for another 40 seconds.
It was alleged Mr Breward was blue after the suffocation, so Mr Jones attempted to give him CPR.
Mr Jones and Mr Izard wrapped Mr Breward in a tarpaulin, put his body in the car and did grocery shopping before driving around Lilydale looking for a supposed mine shaft to dump the body, Mr Coates said.
After failing to locate it, Mr Jones decided to buy a blow-up raft from Kmart and use it to dump the body at Melrose Quarry.
Defence lawyer Greg Richardson told the jury the case was a strange one because most of the facts were not in dispute.
Mr Richardson said it was the legal consequences that were disputed.
The court heard Mr Jones' intention was to get information from Mr Breward, which was not possible if he was dead.
Mr Richardson said his client didn't take the plastic bag used to suffocate Mr Breward or the towel used to waterboard him, both items were at the unit.
But the court heard the accused sent a text message to a friend the day before Mr Breward was killed saying "C---'s gonna pay when I get him".
Mr Jones and his partner were selling the car to pay for a back operation for the woman, but the uninsured Nissan Patrol was stolen. The theft was reported to police and the couple posted to social media offering a $5000 reward for information that led to its return.
The trial before Justice Robert Pearce continues.