R v Reihana [2019] NZDC 16038

Published 25 February 2020

Sentencing — aggravated robbery — sawn-off shotgun — R v Mako [2000] 2 NZLR 170 — Hessell v R [2010] NZSC 135, [2011] 1 NZLR 607 — Sentencing Act 2002, s 27. The defendant appeared for sentencing after pleading guilty to a charge of armed robbery. He had robbed a tavern in the company of another person. Both offenders were armed and disguised. The defendant was armed with a sawn-off shotgun which he pointed at a staff member and also tavern patrons. Several of the patrons then managed to disarm the defendant. During the struggle the gun was discharged, but the cause of it firing was unknown. The aggravating features of the offending were planning and premeditation, group offending, the presence of a very dangerous weapon (the shotgun), vulnerable victim (a tavern with large amounts of cash on the premises), making threats, and high victim impact. The Court observed that it was only a matter of luck that nobody was hit when the defendant's gun went off; if they had been, the defendant may have been facing a murder charge. The Court set a start point of eight years' imprisonment. In mitigation, the defendant was willing to engage in restorative justice, came from a seriously deprived background (as outlined in his s 27 report), and had pleaded guilty. The final sentence was four years three months' imprisonment. Judgment Date: 16 August 2019.