A British man who murdered his brother-in-law at his Perth home has been jailed for life with a minimum of 17 years.
Relatives of Andy Ball clapped as his killer Anthony Carl Prestidge, 51, was sentenced by Supreme Court Justice Lindy Jenkins this afternoon.
Judge Jenkins said Prestidge had "ferociously" attacked his brother-in-law at his Ellenbrook home in September 2002 and callously left him dead on his kitchen floor before going on the run for almost a decade.
The court was told Prestidge lived in Thailand until his arrest and extradition to Australia in 2011.Judge Jenkins found Prestidge had used a weapon when he struck Mr Ball twice to the head with "severe and substantial force" .
She said Prestidge's actions after the murder, including hiding the body under bedding and fleeing the country, were aggravating factors.
"You were trying to save your own skin," she said.
Prestidge was found guilty of murdering Mr Ball after a Supreme Court jury trial earlier this year.
Prestidge had claimed he was acting in self-defence when Mr Ball came at him with a knife.
The jury was told that days before, Prestidge had helped his sister Angela Ball move out of the home because of her husband's physical and emotional abuse.
In a letter to the court, Prestidge apologised and said his actions had caused a "lot of grief".
"I will carry this for the rest of my life," he wrote.
State prosecutor Linda Petrusa had argued the fatal altercation was a "pre-meditated, ferocious attack" and Prestidge had shown a "callous disregard" for Mr Ball.
She also argued that Prestidge had taken it upon himself to "exact some retribution" against Mr Ball for the wrongs committed against his sister.
Defence lawyer Helen Prince said the death was a tragedy and she argued that "what happened in the house, happened in the heat of the moment".
Victim impact statements from Mr Ball's family revealed they were devastated by his death, which had left "a large hole in their lives".
Mr Ball's sister said their grief had been made worse by the fact hat Prestidge fled the country and remained at large for almost 10 years.His family declined to comment as they left court after the sentencing today.
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