AustraliaCalls to ban killers from parole if they refuse to explain how their victims died after wife slayer Borce Ristevski was jailed for only six years
Prosecutors may appeal Ristevski sentence after public outrage
The Director of Public Prosecutions has left the door open to appeal Borce Ristevski's sentence following public outrage that the remorseless wife-killer could walk free in five years. Justice Christopher Beale sentenced an emotionless Ristevski, 55, to a maximum nine years jail with a six-year non-parole period for killing his wife Karen Ristevski, 47, in their Avondale Heights home in Melbourne's north-west on June 29, 2016. With time served, Ristevski could be released by his 60th birthday. © AAP Borce Ristevski arrives at the Supreme Court on Thursday to be sentenced for manslaughter over his wife's death.
There are calls for convicted killers to be banned from early release from jail if they refuse to explain how their victims died - after a judge ruled wife slayer Borce Ristevski can walk free in less than five years.
The 55-year-old was sentenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria on Thursday to nine years' jail for killing his wife Karen following a shock guilty plea on the eve of his murder trial last month.
Wife killer Borce Ristevski could be free from jail in less than FIVE years as judge slams him for 'spinning a web of lies' and a lack of remorse - despite his daughter's 'glowing' character reference
Passing sentence in Victoria's Supreme Court this morning, Justice Christopher Beale castigated Ristevski for his 'rank deceit,' saying 'for years, you continued spinning your web of lies'. Ristevski killed his wife Karen, 47, at their Melbourne home in June 2016 before dumping her body in a national park where it was found eight months later. The 55-year-old feigned innocence for almost three years, lying to the police, the public and his daughter, even carrying his wife's coffin at her funeral, until pleading guilty to manslaughter on the eve of his murder trial last month.
But with time already served and a non-parole period of six years, he may be out before his 60th birthday.
Ristevski has shed no light on what happened on June 29, 2016, when he killed his dress-shop owner wife before disposing her body in between two logs and covering it with foliage.
A police source told the Herald Sun new laws could be considered by the Victorian government to ban killers from parole if they don't explain the circumstances of their victim's death.
The source compared the potential changes to reforms passed in 2016 where killers were not eligible for early release if they did not share the location of the victim's body.
'Why is it any different to someone who won't help find a body? Why should he get parole if he doesn't provide answers? This tortures everyone,' the source said.
Karen's childhood friend nearly found her body
Ahead of Borce Ristevski's sentencing, a childhood friend of Karen made a heartbreaking revelation.
'It would not undermine the right to silence. It would have no impact on conviction.'
The officer added that Ristevski would likely walk free from jail after the six years.
A government spokesman determined it would not be appropriate to comment as the Office of Public Prosecutions are reviewing the sentence, which could pave the way to an appeal.
'This sentence, like all sentences, will be under review for possible appeal. However, no decision has been made as yet,' a spokesman told The Age.
Michael O'Brien, the Victorian Opposition leader, said the sentence did not fit the crime.
'Too many Victorians will be looking at the sentence handed down to Ristevski and shaking their heads,' Mr O'Brien said.
'That's not justice, that's not justice or anything like it, but that's where we are in Victoria at the moment.'
Borce Ristevski to learn his fate: Father-of-two, 55, to be sentenced today after shock guilty plea solved the longstanding mystery over wife's disappearance - as daughter stands by her 'loving' dad
The sentence will be delivered by Justice Christopher Beale in the Supreme Court of Victoria at 10.30am on Thursday morning.
After Thursday's sentencing, Mrs Ristevki's brother Stephen Williams gave a brief statement outside Victoria's Supreme Court.
He said: 'Nothing is going to bring Karen back but today was about justice. We didn't get justice today, at all.
'As a society, at some stage in regards to domestic violence we must make a stand.'
Former homicide detective Charlie Bezzina told A Current Affair Ristevski won't disclose any further details about the crime as he has 'nothing to gain' from doing so.
'If he hasn't said how he killed her to this point he won't say it into the future, I wouldn't imagine,' he said.
'He's got nothing to gain by it and he doesn't want to then place himself in a position of how he killed her.'
In a packed courtroom on Thursday morning, Justice Christopher Beale castigated Ristevski for his 'rank deceit,' saying 'for years, you continued spinning your web of lies'.
Calculated moves? Borce Ristevski's steps after he killed Karen
Whether he intended it or not, nearly every ruthless decision that Borce Ristevski made on the day he killed his wife and in the years since helped him beat a murder rap and lessen his time in jail. The public outcry after he was sentenced to nine years in prison, with a non-parole period of six years for manslaughter, has been swift and loud. A closer look at the evidence reveals Ristevski may have been much more calculating than a husband acting on the spur of the moment. © Pat Scala The Avondale Heights home of slain mother Karen Ristevski.
'When Karen's body was discovered after eight months, you acted as a pallbearer, playing the part of the innocent grieving widower,' he said.
The unexpected guilty plea in mid-March came after he vehemently denied involvement in Karen's death for almost three years.
Justice Beale ruled that Ristevski's actions after the killing, when he played the role of grieving husband, could not be used to prove 'murderous intent'.
A new indictment with the lesser charge of manslaughter was subsequently filed and Ristevski pleaded guilty.
Ristevski killed his wife Karen, 47, at their Melbourne home in June 2016 before dumping her body in a national park where it was found eight months later.
TIMELINE OF KAREN RISTEVSKI'S DEATH AND BRINGING HER KILLER BORCE TO JUSTICE
June 29, 2016
Victoria’s chief commissioner says police want review of Ristevski sentence
Victoria’s chief commissioner says a number of police are upset about the jail sentence handed to Melbourne wife-killer Borce Ristevski. The 55-year-old was last week sentenced to a minimum of six-years behind bars with a maximum of nine-years for the manslaughter of his wife Karen. With time already served, Ristevski could walk on parole in December 2023 – in four-and-a-half years. "We've had a lot of police members that have spoken to me about that sentence and their view that it was something that we should appeal," commissioner Graham Ashton told 3AW radio this morning.
Karen Ristevski last seen at her Melbourne home in Avondale Heights
Her mobile phone pings off a tower in the Macedon Ranges
A car similar to her black Mercedes SLK coupe is spotted by CCTV cameras near Diggers Rest railway station
July 14, 2016
Husband Borce Ristevski and daughter Sarah make a tearful plea for information to help find their missing wife and mother
December 19, 2016
Police search grassland, waterways, creeks and farms
February 20, 2017
Karen Ristevski's body is found at the Mount Macedon Regional Park
March 6, 2017
Funeral service held with Borce Ristevski a pallbearer and daughter Sarah leading the procession
August 31, 2017
Police recreate the journey of Ms Ristevski on the day she went missing in a black Mercedes, identical to hers
December 13, 2017
Borce Ristevski is charged with murder and faces court where a lawyer indicates a not-guilty plea. He is remanded in custody
April 18, 2018
Ristevski returns to court where it's revealed detectives tapped his phone calls and planted listening devices as they investigated the alleged killing, compiling a 22,000-page evidence brief
Ristevski is granted state-funded legal aid as he fights the allegations
July 16, 2018
Ristevski's two-week committal hearing begins and later hears evidence from his daughter Sarah who said he was never 'aggressive' towards her mum.
August 2, 2018
Ristevski is ordered to stand trial in the Supreme Court, charged with murdering his wife
December 4, 2018
A five-week trial for Ristevski is set for March 2019
Pressure mounts on authorities to appeal wife killer Borce Ristevski's sentence - as top cop says the force is 'upset' by the nine-year term and public outrage escalates
A top Victoria cop has revealed frustration within his team over the sentence handed down to wife killer Borce Ristevski.
March 13, 2019
A day before a jury is due to be empanelled for his murder trial, prosecutors withdraw the murder charge after a judge's ruling.
Borce Ristevski pleads guilty to the alternative charge of manslaughter
April 18, 2019
Justice Christopher Beale sentenced Ristevski to nine years in jail with a non-parole period of six years
‘She may be under his spell’: Criminal psychologist claims wife killer Borce Ristevski ‘manipulated’ his loyal daughter to help him escape a murder charge.
Laura Richards, a behavioural analyst who specialised in domestic violence, stalking and coercive control, believes Sarah Ristevski's decision to stand by her father is an example of manipulation.
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