December 3, 2021

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The New Zealand mosque attacker intends to appeal his life sentence

The New Zealand mosque attacker intends to appeal his life sentence

White supremacist Brendan Torrent asks prosecutors during the Christchurch massacre trial in New Zealand on 27 August 2020 afp_tickers

This content was released on 08 November 2021 – 02:15

(AFP)

His lawyer said Monday that the man who attacked a mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand, was considering pleading guilty to the 2019 murder charge and pleading guilty to life imprisonment.

Brendan Toront, a white supremacist who pleaded guilty to 51 counts of murder, 40 counts of attempted murder and one count of terrorism, pleaded guilty last year.

For the first time in New Zealand he was sentenced to life without bail.

Toront did not defend himself at the time, but his current lawyer, Tony Ellis, questioned the Australian man’s decision to now plead guilty.

Ellis said the 31-year-old assailant told her he had accepted the blame under pressure for being subjected to “inhumane and degrading treatment” while in pre-trial custody.

“He decided it was the easiest way to plead guilty,” Ellis told Radio New Zealand.

Local media reported that Ellis advised his client to exercise the right to appeal.

“He was sentenced to more than 25 years in prison, which was a hopeless sentence and it was not allowed, which is against the rights bill,” Ellis said.

Torrent attacked worshipers who came for Friday prayers at Christ Church’s Al Noor Mosque before heading to the Linwood Prayer Center, using semi-automatic weapons and broadcasting the killings live.

His victims were all Muslims and children, women and the elderly.

In his August 2020 ruling, Judge Cameron Mander ruled that Torrent’s “inhumane” actions were the most severe punishment possible.

“Your crimes are so bad that if you are detained until your death, you will not be sufficient to meet the requirements of punishment and condemnation,” Mander declared.

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