Esky murderer appealing 'excessive' abduction sentence
AN UNDERWORLD debt collector, recently convicted of the torture and murder of a hostage near Tin Can Bay, is appealing his sentence for another violent abduction.
William Francis Dean, 37, is serving six years in jail for the kidnapping of Luke Romhegyi, who was taken from a 7-Eleven store at Ashmore and savagely beaten in a disused train tunnel at Molendinar in 2014.
Mr Romhegyi was being hunted over $2000 in unpaid rent.
He had been ordered to paint the home of a Gold Coast restaurateur as a way of paying off the debt.
During the ordeal, Mr Romhegyi's jaw was forced open with fabric tie-down straps while a group of men dealt repeated blows to his head.
Dean pleaded guilty to his part in the extortion, robbery, deprivation of liberty and assault occasioning bodily harm.
His co-accused, Tanar Sensoy pleaded guilty to torture, robbery and kidnapping and was sentenced to five years in jail.
Judge Leanne Clare said the men had shown a "calculated capacity for measured cruelty”.
Defence barrister Simon Lewis, who is appealing on behalf of Dean on the grounds the sentence was "manifestly excessive”, told Brisbane Supreme Court on Wednesday, the "starting point” of the sentence was "too high”.
He said Judge Clare had not been made aware of the 342 days his client had spent in custody before he was sentenced.
While the 11 months behind bars was unable to be declared as time served, Mr Lewis said it should have been taken into account when determining how much longer Dean should spend in jail.
Under the current sentence, Dean would be eligible for parole November 2018.
But he is now awaiting sentence for the torture and murder of Gold Coast man Shaun Barker, who was taken from Broadbeach in 2015 and driven to a home at Cooloola Cove.
There, Mr Barker was held captive in an esky for several days before he was killed and dumped in a nearby forest.
The Court of Appeal has reserved its decision.
- ARM NEWSDESK