By JULIA DAIA BORE
A 24-YEAR-old Birip villager was jailed for life with hard labour for killing a man at the Way Market on Feb 15, 2008.
Joshua Kandayol was found guilty by the Wabag National Court of using a pistol to shoot Lasen Tolai, 24, in the back of the head.
When Tolai collapsed, an accomplice held down the victim while another slashed the victim’s body with a knife.
According to the facts, Kandayol and three others attacked Tolai in the presence of his parents and brother who were on their way home to Wabag’s Napuras village.
Kandayol took out his pistol from inside his clothes and shot Tolai in the back of the head.
Resident judge Justice Graham Ellis, in sentencing Kandayol yesterday morning, said: “This was not just a wilful murder, it was an execution.
“It was planned. One man grabbed Kandayol’s belt, the second assailant grabbed his arm. Once the victim was restrained, Kandayol shot Tolai in the head from behind.
“The attack was both brutal and cowardly in that he shot an unarmed man only after he was restrained and from behind.
“Another assailant, a coward, waited to chop Tolai.”
Justice Ellis said the killing was witnessed by Tolai’s mother just about two metres away and she risked her life throwing herself onto her son to stop the attack.
“No mother should ever have to endure such a painful memory,” he said.
Kandayol was found guilty under section 19 of the Criminal Code which provided the maximum death penalty.
However, Justice Ellis gave Kandayol the life sentence and said: “It can only be hoped that Tolai’s family members obtained some closure today by knowing that the killer will not be able to do that to anyone else.”