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Dublin: 10 °C Saturday 19 April, 2014

Australian man sentenced to 18.5 years for murder of Irish backpacker

Luke James Wentholt will serve a minimum of 15 years for the murder of Dubliner David Greene and the attack on David Byas at party outside Melbourne in August 2012.

Backpacker David Greene, pictured, died two weeks after an attack at a boarding house in St Kilda.
Backpacker David Greene, pictured, died two weeks after an attack at a boarding house in St Kilda.
Image: Herald Sun

Updated 11.45pm

AN AUSTRALIAN MAN has been sentenced to 18.5 years in prison for the murder of an Irish man and for causing the serious injury of another.

Luke James Wentholt will serve a minimum of 15 years for the killing of backpacker David Greene (30) and the attack on David Byas at a boarding house in St Kilda, outside Melbourne, in August 2012.

Wentholt had originally plead not guilty to the murder of Greene but changed his plea to guilty at a Melbourne court in May.

In delivering the sentence at Victoria Supreme Court today, Justice Terry Forrest told described Wenholt’s attack as a “violent rampage” and quoted one witness who said that he was behaving like a “crazy monster”.

Greene died two weeks after the attack, while Byas was in a coma for four days as a result of the incident.

During the course of the trial the court heard evidence of how Wentholt had forcefully stomped on the heads of the two Irish men at the party in St. Kilda. Wentholt’s then girlfriend Shayla Pullen told the court that he had been very drunk on the night of the murder having drank beer, tequila, whiskey and another white spirit like vodka or Bacardi.

Wentholt is believed to have been aggravated by Greene after the Dubliner made jokes about having accidentally seen Pullen without her clothes on earlier that week.

Wentholt had previously been jailed for three-and-a-half years for beating and robbing a prostitute from whom he had demanded the return of money after an encounter.

First published at 9.08am

Read: Australian man changes plea and admits murder of Irish backpacker

Read: Australian man pleads not guilty to murder of Irish backpacker >

Read: Irish backpacker dies following brutal assault in Australia >

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