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Murder case from 1989: Unfairly convicted Australian receives millions in compensation


A quarter of a century ago, a court sentenced an Australian for murder. Wrong, as became clear much later. Now the now 74-year-old is to receive compensation.

Because he was illegally imprisoned for murder for almost 20 years, one million Australian dollars have been awarded to an Australian. David Eastman should receive compensation for his falsely imposed sentence of 7.02 million Australian dollars (4.32 million euros), the Supreme Court of the capital territory Canberra.

The now 74-year-old Eastman had demanded for his time in prison 18 million Australian dollars. The economist and former public servant was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1995 for murdering a police officer. Eastman always asserted his innocence and fought the court decision several times. He was finally released in 2014 after the murder sentence was lifted.

In court, Eastman had stated that his long term detention had deprived him of the opportunity to start a family and pursue his professional career. In addition, his mother and his sisters died while imprisoned. In addition, Eastman allegedly witnessed a murder while in detention and suffered impaired vision after a fellow inmate physically assaulted him in 2006.

"Very happy" about millions compensation

Eastman's lawyer told reporters that his client was "very happy" about the millions in compensation. "He lost a big chunk of his life."

Whether the case possibly goes into a next instance is so far unclear. According to information from the public-right broadcaster ABC, the miscarriage of justice has already cost the government more than 30 million Australian dollars.

The murder trial of Eastman was about the violent death of an Australian federal police officer who was shot dead in 1989 when he got out of his car near his home. The perpetrator has not been identified until today.

Source: spiegel

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