Tania Shailer and David Haerewa have been sentenced to 17 years in prison with a minimum non parole period of 9 years for a charge of manslaughter in relation to the death of 3-year-old Moko Rangitoheriri.
The pair has also been sentenced to 7 years and 6 months on a separate charge of ill treatment of a child to be served concurrently.
The sentence was handed down by Justice Sara Katz at the High Court in Rotorua today.
Moko's mother, Nicola Dally-Paki read a personal statement out to the court prior to sentencing this morning. She outlined the pain and grief Shailer and Haerewa had caused, not only to her son but also to their own children and the rest of Moko’s family.
She referred to the pair as ‘monsters’ and said she was relieved their own children had been removed from their care and were now safe and away from them.
She also spoke of the enduring pain she and her children had to endure without Moko in their lives.
Daily-Paki’s brother Antony Paki and Moko’s grandmother, also provided victim impact statements.
Family members who stood today told the court the pair charged with his manslaughter showed no remorse for what they had done. They also pleaded with the Judge to give the pair the maximum sentence for what they had done.
Shailer and Haerewa pleaded guilty to reduced charges of manslaughter which caused a public outcry. Many believe they should have faced a murder charge due to the horrific nature of how Moko died and the prolonged abuse he suffered.
As the statements were read out inside, marchers gathered outside the Rotorua District Court in solidarity to call for harsher penalties for child abusers.