The driver of a ute involved in a horrifying crash that left three people dead near Thames last night was on bail for drug offences, according to a report.
The head-on crash near State Highway 25's Kopu Bridge left a married couple in their 60s - Ian James Fielder and Jocelyn Fielder - dead, while the other fatality was the 20-year-old driver of the second vehicle.
The man found guilty of strangling and murdering Christchurch sex worker Renee Duckmanton in 2016 has been sentenced to life imprisonment with a minimum non-parole period of 18 years, in the High Court in Christchurch today.
Sainey Marong was found guilty in February, after a High Court at Christchurch jury deliberated for just 50 minutes.
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Source: 1 NEWS
The 33-year-old Gambian born butcher strangled the 22-year-old Duckmanton after picking her up from Christchurch's Manchester Street in May 2016.
He then dumped her body on a Rakaia roadside, and set it on fire. He claimed he was insane at the time, but it took a jury just 50 minutes to find him guilty.
In sentencing today Justice Cameron Mander described the killing as "premeditated, cold blooded," and that Marong has shown no remorse or insight for his actions.
"It is an inescapable conclusion your murder was the culmination of a depraved need to abduct a sex worker and kill her. On this night you carried through with a crime you had been contemplating for some time."
After the judge delivered the sentence the family, who filled the public gallery applauded and thanked the judge.
Others had to be retrained from rushing towards the killer as he was taken down shouting: "Rot in there you maggot".
Earlier in Court today
Murdered sex worker Renee Duckmanton's Nana told the High Court in Christchurch that the callous and vile way her granddaughter was killed, and then burnt, robbed the family of a final chance to hold her before she was buried.
A large group of Ms Duckmanton's family is in court for the sentencing, her mother, father and Nana giving emotional victim impact statements.
Sainey Marong, 33, claimed he was insane when he strangled the young woman, but a high court jury wasn't convinced.
Source: 1 NEWS
Her mother Tracey Duckmanton, demanded her daughter's killer look at her as she delivered her statement.
"Look at me Sainey, you listen to this, you came into her life, and your actions devastated my life ...I have to wake up every morning and won't get to see my beautiful daughter ever again and live with what you did to her."
Marong listened without any show of emotion.
She continued: "I want you to know that no sentence will ever be enough I hope you rot in hell."
Ms Duckmanton's nana, Pat Duckmanton, also demanded the killer look at her as she spoke.
"Not only did you take her life you made it so we couldn't hold her one last time, brush her hair ...her mother could only sit and hold her hand in the days before her funeral because we couldn’t have an open casket."
Twenty-year-old Ms Duckmanton's body was found burning on the side of the road in Rakaia, in May 2016.
Murder accused, 33-year-old Marong admitted strangling her, as he gave evidence in his own defence, however he claims he was insane at the time.
The Crown's case included evidence that Marong murdered Ms Duckmanton to "fulfil his sexual fantasy" of killing a sex worker and had googled whether fire would destroy DNA.
In summing up earlier today, Justice Cameron Mander told the jury: "The internet searches are evidence on which the Crown relies that Mr Marong was planning on the murder of a sex worker."
However Justice Mander says Marong's evidence in his own defence stated: "He was mentally impaired when he assaulted Miss Duckmanton, he says he was insane.
"It's the defence case that the accused did not intend to kill her and therefore did not have murderous intent."
The jury needs to decide if the accused is guilty or not guilty of murder or manslaughter, and they then must consider whether it's been proven the accused was insane at the time of the killing.
Justice Mander has explained to the jury that if they decide Marong is not guilty by reason of insanity, he would decide his further treatment under the Mentally Impaired Person's Act.
"It would not be the case that Mr Marong is released on delivery of such a verdict."
Sainey Marong strangled 22-year-old Duckmanton before burning her body, and today was put in prison for a minimum of 18 years.
Source: 1 NEWS