Donile gets 27 years

Con­victed mur­derer be­gins his prison term

Talk of the Town - - Front Page - ROB KNOWLES

Con­victed mur­derer Tonny Donile was de­fi­ant as he left the Port Al­fred Re­gional Court last Fri­day and even man­aged to “flip the bird” af­ter be­ing sen­tenced to an ef­fec­tive 27 years in prison for one count of cul­pa­ble homi­cide, an­other for house­break­ing and a third count for mur­der.

Donile was ar­rested in Au­gust 2016 and has been in po­lice cus­tody since.

De­spite many court ap­pear­ances over the in­ter­ven­ing pe­riod when the ac­counts of foren­sic wit­nesses, po­lice and med­i­cal per­son­nel were heard, Donile re­mained adamant that he was in­no­cent of the mur­der of al­leged rob­ber Kh­wezi Me­mani in 2010 and busi­ness­man Noel Mad­docks in Au­gust 2016.

Back in 2010, Ne­mato tav­ern owner Donile had lain in wait for rob­bers, whom he be­lieved were tar­get­ing his tav­ern. He man­aged to catch 20-year-old Me­mani and an ac­com­plice af­ter they en­tered the tav­ern through a win­dow.

The ev­i­dence of how Me­mani was bru­tally beaten, pos­si­bly with a brick to the head, was pre­sented to a shocked gallery ear­lier this year.

Mag­is­trate Kenny Cooney, who has resided over the case since it was first taken to court, said it was not pos­si­ble to de­ter­mine that Donile had pre­med­i­tated the death of Me­mani, but added that any rea­son­able per­son would have un­der­stood that Me­mani was no threat af­ter Donile, a kick-box­ing trainer, had got him to the ground, in­flict­ing sev­eral near-fa­tal in­juries in­clud­ing bro­ken ribs, a per­fo­rated lung and a com­pound frac­ture to his leg, and that Donile should have stopped beat­ing Me­mani and called the po­lice.

“On this ba­sis I can­not call this pre­med­i­tated mur­der,” said Cooney. Donile was there­fore found guilty of cul­pa­ble homi­cide.

As for the sec­ond and third counts, Donile had told the court, through his at­tor­ney Mark Botha, that wit­nesses, the po­lice and the foren­sic of­fi­cial had con­spired against him with re­spect to counts two and three. He re­mained adamant that he and his for­mer part­ner, Pia Roser, were still in a re­la­tion­ship at the time of the death of Mad­docks and he had there­fore not il­le­gally en­tered the prop­erty in Al­bert Road as he had been still liv­ing there. In pre­vi­ous ap­pear­ances Botha had claimed that Roser’s en­tire tes­ti­mony had been dis­cred­ited, but Cooney did not agree and handed down a sen­tence of two years im­pris­on­ment for house­break­ing.

As for the mur­der of Mad­docks, Cooney said in his sum­ma­tion that Donile had no re­spect for law and or­der and seemed to have a dif­fer­ent view of the events than made sense to the court. “The court knows that your ac­tions were com­pletely un­nec­es­sary and you have shown no shred of re­morse for your ac­tions.

“Your ac­tions were bru­tal and shock­ing,” said Cooney.

For the Mad­docks mur­der Donile re­ceived a sen­tence of 17 years im­pris­on­ment. As counts two and three will run con­cur­rently, Donile will serve an ef­fec­tive 27 years in prison.

Sup­port­ers of the con­victed mur­derer sur­rounded him as he left the court­room and he was im­me­di­ately put into a jail cell by po­lice, await­ing trans­porta­tion to prison.

Pic­ture: ROB KNOWLES

OFF TO PRISON: The Port Al­fred Re­gional Court found Tonny Donile, cen­tre, guilty of cul­pa­ble homi­cide as well as house­break­ing and mur­der in two in­ci­dents that took place in 2010 and 2016 re­spec­tively

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