Belfast Telegraph

Killer must serve at least 11 years for alley murder

By Michael Donnelly

A Self-confessed killer has been told he must serve at least 11 years for the murder of a Polish national in Newry.

Adrian Gregory Cunningham admitted the murder of Pole Marek Mateusz Musynski in July 2009.

Newry Crown Court Judge David McFarland said the nature of the murder of 40-year-old Mr Musynski would attract “widespread public abhorrence”.

He was left to die alone after being viciously kicked in an alleyway in the border town of Newry following an attack sometime between July 6 and 7, 2009.

Judge McFarland, sitting in Enniskillen courthouse, told 20-year-old Cunningham, of Lisgullion Park, Newry, that having served the minimum jail term it would be up to the Life Sentence Review Commissioners to decide when “if at all” he should be released.

The judge also told Cunningham that it “would be impossible to convey” the deep impact the murder has had on Mr Musynski's parents without treading further on their grief and continuing sense of loss by reporting what each had said.

However, Judge McFarland revealed that in an effort to cope with “the enormity of their loss and the manner of their son's death” they had cut themselves off from family, friends and society in general.

“This personal grief will no doubt be shared by all right-minded members of the public in this country,” said Judge McFarland.

And he added: “There will be widespread public abhorrence when one considers the nature of Mr Musynski's death.

“Here was a visitor to this country, trying to better himself in a new country, dying alone by being kicked to death in an alley in Newry in the early hours of the morning.”

Judge McFarland said that while the only sentence for murder was life, taking into account Cunningham's plea of guilty, co-operation and other mitigating factors, he'd determined the minimum period he should serve in jail was 11 years.

This, the judge had said, should help to “satisfy the requirements of retribution and deterrence” given the seriousness of Cunningham's offence.

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