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Ten years jail for sadistic, brutal torture

A block of units in Electra St where some of the torture took place.
A block of units in Electra St where some of the torture took place. Mike Knott

FOR 10 hours a disabled man was tortured in a "sadistic, cruel and cowardly" attack by a man on a nine-day "amphetamine bender".

Former NewsMail employee Troy Allen Drews, 36, was yesterday jailed for 10 years after pleading guilty to one count of torture, two counts of deprivation of liberty, three counts of assault and one count of grievous bodily harm.

At an Electra St home in the early hours of February 16 last year, Drews began a vicious assault on Peter Laurens, a vulnerable man who suffered from cerebral palsy.

The men were known to each other and Mr Laurens had earlier done Drews a favour by going to the shops and buying him a packet of cigarettes.

But when Mr Laurens spent some of Drews' change on food, a high and paranoid Drews became enraged.

With two co-offenders egging Drews on, he tortured Mr Laurens and left him with life-threatening injuries.

Three kettles of boiling water were poured over Mr Laurens' face, neck and back.

Mr Laurens later told police he could smell himself burning.

A knife was held to Mr Laurens and Drews repeatedly told him he was going to kill him.

Mr Laurens rolled himself in a ball and tried to protect himself but Drews jumped on his chest a number of times and left him with a collapsed lung.

The offences continued at four different addresses until Mr Laurens was dumped in the front yard of a home and left for dead.

During the attack Mr Laurens passed out at least twice and is still too scared to provide a victim impact statement about how the incident affected him.

During yesterday's sentencing defence barrister Kim Bryson said Drews left school after Year 8. He started taking drugs and battled with addiction since then.

Ms Bryson said there had been periods of Drews' life when he was drug free and held down jobs, including a period some years ago at the NewsMail as a dock employee.

Ms Bryson said her client could offer no real explanation for why he did what he did to Mr Laurens except that at the time he was a "prolific user of methamphetamine" who had "used for nine days in a row and had not slept".

Drews' offences on February 16 also included the assault and deprivation of liberty of a woman at the same Electra St home.

Judge Tony Moynihan said Drews had terrorised two people and described the brutal assault on Laurens as sadistic, cruel and cowardly.

Declared a serious violent offender, Drews must serve eight years of the 10 year sentence before he becomes eligible for parole.

Topics:  court, crime, editors picks, jail, torture



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