The man accused of killing Carlingford mother Kristi McDougall, chopping up her body and disposing of it in Eastern Creek, has been found not guilty.
The NSW Supreme Court jury found Robert Thomas Best, 49, not guilty in a unanimous verdict today.
Mr Best had pleaded not guilty to murdering Ms McDougall, a drug dealer, in front of his girlfriend at his Dundas apartment in Sydney's west on June 19, 2010.
The torso of Ms McDougall, 31, was found on the banks of Eastern Creek in Doonside seven weeks later but her head and limbs were never recovered.
Debbra Hogden, Mr Best's former lover, was a key witness in the trial.
She told the court Mr Best choked Ms McDougall with a rope and stuck her head in a bucket of water ‘‘until the bubbles stopped’’.
Ms Hogden said he then defiled Ms McDougall's body, before the pair took the drug ice and went to the nearby Ermington Hotel to establish an alibi.
But defence barrister Philip Young, SC, told the jury Ms Hogden's version of events was ‘‘fanciful’’ and ‘‘illogical’’.
Ms Hogden had pleaded guilty to being an accessory to murder after the fact and was placed on a good behaviour bond.
Mr Young told the court that in deciding whether Ms Hogden was a reliable and accurate witness, the jury needed to look at her honesty and accuracy.
The crown alleged after Mr Best killed Ms Mcdougall, he chopped up her body with a hacksaw and deposited the parts in different locations around Sydney.
The trial, which lasted five weeks, heard Ms McDougall had stopped supplying ice to Mr Best, whose Centrelink payments had been redirected to her account up until 11 days before her death.
The jury also found Mr Best not guilty of the alternative charge of manslaughter.
Justice Stephen Rothman dismissed the charge against Mr Best.