15 Sep 2008

Solomons MP appeals jail sentence for kniving attack

8:10 pm on 15 September 2008

A Solomon Islands MP, Peter Shanel, today appeared before a packed high court to appeal his nine month jail sentence.

Shanel has been jailed for knifing a school student during a dispute with

Shanel's wife at the National Referral Hospital last year.

Today the politician's lawyer Andrew Radcliff appealed the sentence saying

assault cases like this are usually dealt with through fines rather than by

jail sentences.

Mr Radcliff said the jail sentence was excessive and called on the court to

reduce it.

But the Crown said the assault was at the high end of the scale, it was deliberate and planned with Shanel concealing the knife before he attacked.

Justice Cameron Scott has reserved his decision.

Meanwhile Parliamentary officials have confirmed that Shanel will remain an MP throughout the appeal process.