A NSW inquest into the electrocution of a young carpenter has heard illegal wiring at a Sydney house was "similar" to that uncovered at two other properties.
Luke Bray was electrocuted while working in the roof cavity of a house at Carlton, in the city's south, in February 2017.
The 24-year-old, who had recently become engaged to fiancee Jamie-Lee Rigby, died at the scene despite resuscitation attempts from his colleagues and paramedics.
The five-day inquest exploring the circumstances of his death got underway before NSW deputy coroner Elaine Truscott on Monday.
In his opening address, counsel assisting the coroner Sergeant Stephen Kelly said electricity bills had reduced dramatically after the property was leased to a woman in 2013.
Properties in Mount Pritchard and Bardwell Valley associated with the tenant's brother had "similar" wiring that indicated the installation of illegal bypasses to steal electricity.
Decommissioned from the navy, Bray contacted qualified builder Brett Anderson over Facebook looking for work.
While not having a full-time position available, Mr Anderson arranged for him to assist in fixing the Carlton home's slumped roof, Sgt Kelly said.
While Mr Anderson and a colleague replaced wooden beams together, Mr Bray did so on his own in a different part of the roof.
The colleague heard a "noise" from where Mr Bray was working and thought it was the young tradie "singing", Sgt Kelly said.
But a short time later, he discovered Mr Bray slumped over the strutting beam.
Sgt Kelly said he expected the inquest would hear that when Mr Anderson rushed over, the builder noticed Mr Bray holding a frayed cable with exposed copper wire in his right hand.
Using a leather belt, Mr Anderson pulled Mr Bray away from the wiring as the colleague called an ambulance.
In his report, Ausgrid installation inspector Mark Krummer determined Mr Bray had stumbled on an exposed wire stemming from an "illegal bypass".
"He concluded it is likely Luke received an electric shock of sufficient magnitude to cause ventricular fibrillation," Sgt Kelly said.
"In his opinion, the likely path of the circuit would have been right hand to right leg, left leg or both legs."
An autopsy also noted blistering of his hand was consistent with electrocution, with a black burn mark visible on the underside of the wire.
The inquest continues.
Australian Associated Press