Oz who attacked Indian cabbie let off with light term

MSN News | 24/05/2010

An Australian youth, who pleaded guilty to recklessly causing serious injury to an Indian student-cum-cabbie two years ago, has escaped with a light punishment despite the court being told that he "hated" Indians and the attack could have been "racially inspired". Murat Kilinc, 22, was awarded three years jail term by County Court judge Joseph Gullaci who, however, said he was not satisfied beyond reasonable doubt that the attack was racially motivated or pre-planned.

According to the case, the accused had attacked the 23-year-old Indian after hiring his taxi in Campbellfield in Melbourne’s west on February 16, 2008. The latter suffered a broken nose, jaw, cheekbones and a skull fracture. Judge Gullaci said he was unable to be satisfied whether the attack was preplanned or had happened after Kilinc and another passenger intended to evade the fare, reports ‘The Age’ daily. Last week, Psychologist Rachael Freeland had told the court that Kilinc’s attack might have "subconsciously" been inspired by racial motives and that he hated Indians.  

Kilinc, unemployed, had also pleaded guilty to recklessly causing serious injury to the Indian student. While sentencing Kilinc to a minimum of 18 months behind bars, the court stated that alcohol-fuelled attacks on taxi drivers would be denounced and dealt with severely. The court had a duty to protect taxi drivers from cowardly attacks. "The victim was a soft target and the attack happened in the early hours of the morning," Judge Gullaci said.

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