A man who murdered an Auckland man in a brutal, callous attack with a thistle grubber has been jailed for life and won't be eligible for parole for at least another 21 years.
Wayne Bracken, 35, appeared in the High Court at Whangarei today for sentencing on charges of murder and kidnapping of Auckland man Jack Davis on February 25, last year, and charges of aggravated robbery, injuring with intent to injure and burglary of a Northland couple on an earlier occasion.
Bracken was found guilty of murdering and kidnapping Mr Davis after a seven-week jury trial in Whangarei earlier
His co-accused in the death of Mr Davis, Neville Dangen, 24, from Kaeo, was found not guilty on the charges. Mr Dangen was not involved in the aggravated robbery.
During the trial it emerged that Bracken had Davis hog tied, left him tied up in a woolshed for about 20 hours, then beat him to death with a thistle grubber, before leaving his body down a ravine off and isolated Northland road.
Today Justice Edwin Wylie said a starting point for Bracken's ``cold blooded'' killing was 20 years and he uplifted it by a year for aggravating features, including Bracken's continued denial of any wrong doing, complete lack of remorse, 18 previous convictions, including several for violence and the brutality of the murder.
Mr Davis' family thanked Justice Wylie after the sentencing and said they were pleased with the length of sentence Bracken received.
Bracken remained emotionless during the sentencing, staring straight ahead while several of Mr Davis' family read victim impact statements to the court.