The man jailed for the rape and murder of North Shore woman Blessie Gotingco has launched an appeal against his life sentence.

NZME has learned that Tony Douglas Robertson will appear before the Court of Appeal on February 3.

In August the 28-year-old was sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum-non-parole period of 24 years for murdering Mrs Gotingco and preventive detention for raping the mother and grandmother.

His crimes against the 56-year-old came only months after Robertson was released from prison for similarly depraved offending.


On May 24 last year, Robertson hit Ms Gotingco while she was walking home down a Birkdale street.

Seeing her motionless body on the road, Robertson scooped her up, bundled her into the back of his BMW and took her to his nearby apartment just in time to make his curfew.

He was being monitored by Corrections via a GPS anklet at the time.

Once he was in the garage, beneath his home, the defendant sexually abused the injured woman before strangling her, stabbing her and slashing her throat.

Early the following morning, he wrapped Ms Gotingco's body in a bedsheet and took her to Eskdale cemetery down the road where he dumped her body in thick bush.

It is understood Robertson is appealing at least one of his convictions and his sentence.

Mrs Gotingco's family did not want to comment on the development.