Attacker's sentence reduced on appeal

Last updated 10:45 27/06/2014

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An Auckland businessman who repeatedly struck another man with a broken bottle, causing serious injuries, has had his prison sentence reduced on appeal.

Sheng Sun was jailed by an Auckland District Court judge for six years for the February, 2011, attack, which left his victim with what the judge called significant and long-term injuries.

The attack happened when a man tried to break up a fight at a restaurant between Sun and a woman with whom Sun had been in a "brief and volatile" relationship.

Sun and the man got into an altercation which ended with them on the ground, with Sun on top of his victim. Sun repeatedly struck him with a broken bottle, and the sentencing judge said: "It is a matter of good luck rather than good management that much more serious injuries were not caused and that you were not in the High Court facing a murder charge."

Sun appealed his sentence, with his lawyer arguing the judge had taken too-long a sentence as a starting point in her deliberations when compared to what people convicted of similar offences had received.

In a decision released today, the Court of Appeal agreed.

It said the attack had not been premeditated, and although the injuries the victim received were "quite serious . . . we would not classify the violence on the part of the appellant as extreme".

The court also noted that the bottle that was used as a weapon was not taken to the scene by Sun, and had not been deliberately broken before it was used.

The six-year jail sentence was quashed and replaced with one of four years and nine months. 

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