A woman kept a photograph of a "distressed" schoolteacher who was tied to a chair before he was killed by a truck on a northern NSW highway.
Police allegedly found the photo of Anthony Stott on Lauren Clair Grainger's phone while investigating how he was struck while walking along the M1 near Cudgera Creek on February 10.
Grainger, 39, initially denied knowing the Brisbane-based school teacher had been at the Kanes Road property she shared with Mark Francis Frost, 46.
However the photo on her mobile allegedly showed Mr Stott tied to a distinctive white chair.
The image showed the victim with his hands tied behind his back with the cord wound around his neck and arms, prosecutor Sergeant Val Short told Tweed Heads Local Court on Monday.
"He is clearly quite distressed in the image extracted from Ms Grainger's phone," she said.
The cord and the chair have not been recovered.
Details of the photo were aired during a bail application for Grainger, who has been charged with taking or detaining Mr Stott, 43, with intent to obtain advantage.
Frost is facing the same charge.
The schoolteacher had just returned to Australia from Peru before he died.
Mr Stott's BMW was located in the middle of the M1 at 2am, a short distance from the property where he was allegedly tied up, police say.
He was struck by the truck while walking along the highway about 7am.
Detectives will allege Mr Stott was tied to the chair by Frost and Grainger at their home between 2am and 7am.
It's not known how he got to and from the property. It's also unclear if he was released or broke free from the chair.
Mr Stott's relationship with the accused remains unclear.
Police opposed Grainger's bail application and magistrate Geoff Dunlevy said that despite a lack of criminal history, there was a risk Grainger could interfere with witnesses and key evidence.
"Key items of physical evidence have not been discovered or recovered by police and potentially the defendant knows the locations of those items," he said.
Family and friends of the woman crowded into the public gallery gasped audibly as bail was denied and declined to comment outside the court.
Frost did not apply for bail, and was remanded in custody until his matter is mentioned again on Wednesday.
Grainger's charge was adjourned for mention on April 6.
Australian Associated Press