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Violent offender Hartnett to serve at least six years jail

A MAN will serve at least six years in jail for a brutal attack where he hit a man 30 times in the head with a metal bar, threatened to rape and sell him, then shot him three times in the feet.

On July 20 last year a car driven by Chantelle Budby pulled over to pick up a drug associate of hers.

The man got in the car and was almost immediately set upon by Peter James Hartnett, 37, and two other men.

Hartnett, armed with a metal bar, demanded money from the man, who had none. He began hitting the man with the metal bar, striking a total of 30 times in the head.

The other two men in the back seat covered his head and placed a belt around his neck. They stabbed him with screwdrivers and tore at surgically implanted wires in his hand.

Hartnett told the man they weren't going to kill him but threatened to rape and sell him.

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After Budby drove around 20kms to the Kholo Bridge they met another car, pulled over and threw the man out of the car. Hartnett told the man to take his shoes off. As he took the shoes off Hartnett pulled out a gun and shot in three times in the feet.

Fearing for his life, the man was told to head into the bushes and not return. He crawled into the scrub as the cars left the scene.

Hartnett pleaded guilty at the Ipswich District Court to deprivation of liberty, malicious acts causing grievous bodily harm, armed assault in company, and unlawful use of a motor vehicle as well as weapons, drugs and bail charges.

Judge Sarah Bradley described the attack as "absolutely horrific" and said Hartnett was the principal offender and "enforcer" in the incident.

"The attack in the car was protracted, brutal and cowardly," she said.

"He was almost immediately ... subjected to violence.

"The subsequent shooting was just totally gratuitous."

Judge Bradley sentenced Hartnett to eight years prison and declared a serious violent offender, meaning he will serve at least 80% of the sentence.

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Topics:  grievous bodily harm, ipswich district court



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