Crime

Sentencing Next Week For Soldier In Case Of Attempted Murder

The accused is alleged to have attempted to drown his 35-year-old partner while swimming in the Colo-i-Suva pool after they agreed to go for an early morning swim on September 15, 2018.
07 Dec 2019 15:51
Sentencing Next Week For Soldier In Case Of Attempted Murder
Rajiv Padyachi outside High Court in Suva on November 29, 2019.Photo: Ashna Kumar

A soldier, who has been found guilty for attempted murder, will be sentenced next week.

Rajiv Krishnan Padyachi, 29, appeared before Judge Justice Chamath Morais on Thursday at the High Court in Suva for his sentencing and mitigation.

The accused is alleged to have attempted to drown his 35-year-old partner while swimming in the Colo-i-Suva pool after they agreed to go for an early morning swim on September 15, 2018.

A team of Police officers heard the woman’s cry for help, managed to save her and arrest the accused.

The complainant had sustained injuries during the incident.

Padyachi was represented by lawyer Gavin O’Driscoll while the State was represented by Sheenal Swastika and Yogesh Prasad from the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

In the sentencing submission, Mr Prasad submitted that the state was seeking a sentence between 12 and 20 years.

He told the court that the sentence should set a distinction for deterrence.

He told the court that every case had its own aggravating and mitigating factors and that deterrence was the most important aspect of a setnence.

He told the court that the sentence would send a message to the society to safeguard other vulnerable and naive people.

Mr Prasad told the court that the accused was purely evil and Colo-i-Suva was a perfect place for the perfect murder that he had planned.

He told the court that no mercy was shown by Padyachi during the evil act.

He also told the court that military officers were trained to save life and protect the country and its citizens and what Padyachi did was contrary to his training.

Mr O’Driscoll told the court that he disputed the statement that the tariff of attempted murder was life imprisonment.

He told the court that there had been a number of cases in Fiji of such kind and there was only one, to his knowledge, that imposed life imprisonment.

He also told the court that Padyachi should be given an opportunity to rehabilitate if given a chance.

He sought for a consideration for a lenient sentence with or without a period of suspension.

Mr O’Driscoll submitted that Padyachi was a valued member of the Republic of the Fiji Military Forces and sought a sentence of less than three years.

The matter has been adjourned for sentencing on December 11.

Edited by Jonathan Bryce

Feedback: ashna.kumar@fijisun.com.fj

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