Sunday 21 April 2019

Man admits choking Airbnb guest to death over unpaid 210 Australian dollar (€131) bill

Victim Ramis Jonuzi (Photo: Facebook)
Victim Ramis Jonuzi (Photo: Facebook)
Independent.ie Newsdesk

Independent.ie Newsdesk

A man has admitted in an Australian court that he choked an Airbnb guest to death over an unpaid 210 Australian dollar (€131) bill.

Jason Colton pleaded not guilty to murder in the Victoria state Supreme Court but admitted the manslaughter of Ramis Jonuzi in 2017.

Colton would face a possible life sentence if a jury convicts him of murder. He would face up to 20 years if the jury accepts the death was manslaughter.

Prosecutors told the jury that Colton knew his actions were likely to kill or seriously injure Mr Jonuzi.

The victim had been subletting a room in a Melbourne home from Colton, who was also a tenant.

Mr Jonuzi first rented the room for three nights on Airbnb, but agreed to stay another week for 210 dollars.

But when the week was up and the rent was not paid, Colton threw him against a wall, choked him with his forearm and punched him unconscious, prosecutor Mark Gibson told the jury.

Colton also forced Mr Jonuzi to show he had less than 10 dollars in his bank account.

Mr Gibson said Colton choked or compressed Mr Jonuzi's neck to prevent him from breathing.

Colton told police he only wanted to subdue Mr Jonuzi so he would pass out.

The trial will continue on Tuesday.

Press Association

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