Two Melbourne housemates who held down and beat an Airbnb guest during a sustained assault that killed him have been jailed.
Ryan Charles Smart, 38, and Craig Jonathon Levy, 37, each pleaded guilty to the manslaughter of Ramis Jonuzi, who died last October.
Smart was jailed for nine years with a minimum of six years, while Levy was sentenced to seven-and-a-half years with a minimum of four-and-a-half years.
Mr Jonuzi, 36, was renting a room in the pair’s Brighton East home on Airbnb but was asked to leave the day he died after not paying a $210 bill.
An argument erupted about the unpaid money after Mr Jonuzi packed up to leave.
It was allegedly started by a third man, Jason Colton, who is due to stand trial for Mr Jonuzi’s murder next year.
During a sustained assault, the victim was kicked and punched in the living room until he lost consciousness.
Levy then helped to carry him outside where Smart held Mr Jonuzi in a leg lock.
Levy used his phone to have Mr Jonuzi check his bank account and confirm it contained just $6, before the attack continued.
After noticing neighbours watching, Levy went inside to call the police while Smart continued to hold down Mr Jonuzi who at times was crying and yelling and other times appeared unconscious.
“For some of the attack Mr Jonuzi was unconscious on the ground, for all of it he was helpless,” Justice Andrew Tinney said, jailing the pair in separate hearings in the Victorian Supreme Court on Wednesday.
He said Levy was actively involved from the beginning and far from being a mere observer.
Smart had ample opportunity to assist Mr Jonuzi and try and bring the attack to an end but failed to do so.
The judge accepted both men were remorseful and noted they could benefit from time in custody.
Mr Jonuzi’s family wiped away tears while Levy’s sisters offered him words of support as he was taken from court.