A 73-year-old man has been charged over the alleged murder of a Lightning Ridge woman last year.
The body of then 39-year-old Christine Neilan was discovered in bushland near Sunflash Street and Black Prince Drive at Lightning Ridge on January 9, 2020.
A post-mortem examination revealed she died from serious head injuries.
Detectives from the State Crime Command's Homicide Squad and Central North Police District established Strike Force Bullarook to investigate the circumstances surrounding her death.
As a part of ongoing investigations, Homicide Squad detectives conducted an extensive search of a property, and surrounding bushland at Lightning Ridge, between October 14 and 17.
Following inquiries, a 73-year-old man was arrested and charged over the murder at a Lightning Ridge property just after 10am on Monday.
He was bail refused and will appear before Walgett Local Court on October 25.
Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Danny Doherty said police located a firearm at the property, which will be ballistically examined.
He said police allege this was also the location where Ms Neilan died, and alleged police had uncovered "something in relation to motive" but could not elaborate further.
"There's a strong brief of evidence, that police allege this man shot Christine," he said.
"There's no evidence to suggest any other persons are involved, except the person that's been charged with the murder."
Detective Superintendent Doherty said they believed there was no direct link between the man and Ms Neilan, and the circumstances surrounding the murder would be played out before the court.
"Lightning Ridge is again a relatively small township, everyone knows each other. But there's no direct relationship, everyone just knows each other," he said.
The homicide commander thanked those involved in what was a "very complex, arduous and challenging" investigation, and praised detectives for their persistence.
"I'd like to thank the community of Lightning Ridge, and also Christine's family for their assistance," he said.
"The information that's been provided and the assistance provided to investigators has been of great assistance and invaluable."
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