Anna Leask is senior police reporter for the New Zealand Herald.

Moko's killer files appeal against sentence

Tania Shailer (left) and David William Haerewa in court for the murder of the toddler. Photo / File
Tania Shailer (left) and David William Haerewa in court for the murder of the toddler. Photo / File

Warning: Graphic content.

The woman who killed toddler Moko Rangitoheriri has filed an appeal against her manslaughter sentence.

Last month Tania Shailer, 26, and David Haerewa, 44, were sentenced to 17 years in jail with a minimum non-parole period of nine years after pleading guilty to manslaughter.

Moko, 3, died in August last year while in the care of the couple. Shailer was a friend of Moko's mother Nicola Dally-Paki.

Dally-Paki needed to stay in Auckland with another child who was sick and receiving treatment at Starship Hospital, and asked Shailer to take care of Moko and his older sister while she was away.

Moko died of 'multiple blunt force traumas' while in the care of Tania Shailer. Photo / File
Moko died of 'multiple blunt force traumas' while in the care of Tania Shailer. Photo / File

A post-mortem examination revealed Moko died as a result of "multiple blunt force traumas".

He had lacerations and hemorrhaging deep within his abdomen, historic bruising and damage to his bowel. Combined, that resulted in his bowel rupturing. Fecal matter leaked into Moko's abdomen, causing septic shock.

His brain was swollen, he had blood clots under his scalp representing numerous injuries inflicted at different times in the lead up to his death.

There was evidence the toddler had been smothered.

His body was a veritable map of torture - Moko had human bite marks, contusions, abrasions, deep bruising, lacerations, patterned injuries on his face, chin, neck, ears, lower lip, gums, eyes, ribs, testes, skin, chest, tummy, shoulder, arms.

Shailer and Haerewa would later admit abusing the little boy in the weeks leading up to his death.

Their sentence was the longest ever handed out in New Zealand for the manslaughter of a child.

The Herald can reveal that Shailer has since appealed that sentence.

A Court of Appeal spokeswoman confirmed the notice of appeal had been filed but could not elaborate on the grounds for it.

- NZ Herald

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