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Manodh Marks appealing sentence after holding passengers hostage with a fake bomb

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Crazed man who held passengers hostage with a fake bomb on a flight from Melbourne to Sri Lanka while high on ice appeals his jail sentence

  • Manodh Marks was sentenced to 12 years for threatening to destroy a plane 
  • He’s appealing his sentence so he can return to Sri Lanka immediately 
  • The judges will hand down their decision on Mark’s case at a later date 

For nearly two hours passengers on a Malaysian Airlines flight from Melbourne to Sri Lanka thought they were going to die because Manodh Marks was threatening to destroy the plane.

He had devices with flashing blue lights in each hand as he stood outside the cockpit of the Airbus with 222 people on board and threatened to ‘blow the f***ing plane up’.

The then 25-year-old was jailed last year for up to 12 years and will have to serve at least nine before he’s deported back to his home city of Colombo after pleading guilty to attempting to take or exercise control over a plane.

Manodh Marks (pictured) held passengers hostage on a Malaysian Airlines flight from Melbourne to Sri Lanka for nearly two hours

Manodh Marks (pictured) held passengers hostage on a Malaysian Airlines flight from Melbourne to Sri Lanka for nearly two hours

The then 25-year-old was jailed last year for up to 12 years and will have to serve at least nine before he's deported back to his home city of Colombo after pleading guilty to attempting to take or exercise control over a plane

The then 25-year-old was jailed last year for up to 12 years and will have to serve at least nine before he’s deported back to his home city of Colombo after pleading guilty to attempting to take or exercise control over a plane

But he’s now hoping to have that sentence overturned so he can return immediately.

His lawyer Paul Smallwood claims it’s not out of the question Marks be handed a fresh sentence involving no jail time.

Marks had only just been released from a psychiatric unit before he boarded the flight and made the ill-advised decision to use ice.

‘This is a man who was very, very psychiatrically unwell,’ Mr Smallwood told the Court of Appeal on Friday.

Marks was in a different position to someone who had been ‘boozing on’ in the lounge before take-off, he said.

Marks had used drugs before boarding the plane but he was already experiencing residual psychiatric symptoms.

But he's now hoping to have that sentence overturned so he can return immediately

But he’s now hoping to have that sentence overturned so he can return immediately

A sentence without jail time was not entirely out of the sentencing range that had been available to County Court Judge Michael McInerney, Mr Smallwood said.

Commonwealth prosecutor Krista Breckweg’s said the fact Marks did not have a real bomb did not obliterate his moral culpability, but it was lower than if the bomb had been real.

The device turned out to be a bluetooth speaker, but his claims had still deliberately terrified passengers who didn’t know that at the time.

His lawyer Paul Smallwood claims it's not out of the question Marks be handed a fresh sentence involving no jail time

His lawyer Paul Smallwood claims it’s not out of the question Marks be handed a fresh sentence involving no jail time

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A sentence without jail time was not entirely out of the sentencing range that had been available to County Court Judge Michael McInerney, Mr Smallwood said

A sentence without jail time was not entirely out of the sentencing range that had been available to County Court Judge Michael McInerney, Mr Smallwood said

The consequences of it being a real bomb would have been 'certain death for everyone on that plane' and that would have been terrifying to anyone, Justice Simon Whelan said

The consequences of it being a real bomb would have been ‘certain death for everyone on that plane’ and that would have been terrifying to anyone, Justice Simon Whelan said

Three judges are hearing the appeal and agreed with the prosecutors position.

The consequences of it being a real bomb would have been ‘certain death for everyone on that plane’ and that would have been terrifying to anyone, Justice Simon Whelan said.

‘They are terrorised exactly as if it was a real bomb,’ he said.

Passengers and crew restrained Marks on board the plane during the incident, which occurred shortly after takeoff

Passengers and crew restrained Marks on board the plane during the incident, which occurred shortly after takeoff

The plane landed within 15 minutes, but it took 40 minutes for security to arrive and passengers had to remain on board for nearly 90 minutes after

The plane landed within 15 minutes, but it took 40 minutes for security to arrive and passengers had to remain on board for nearly 90 minutes after

Ms Breckweg added that a report found the primary cause of the incident was Marks’ meth-induced psychosis.

Passengers and crew restrained Marks on board the plane during the incident, which occurred shortly after takeoff.

The plane landed within 15 minutes, but it took 40 minutes for security to arrive and passengers had to remain on board for nearly 90 minutes after.

Marks was in court for the hearing. The judges will hand down their decision at a later date.

Marks was in court for the hearing. The judges will hand down their decision at a later date

Marks was in court for the hearing. The judges will hand down their decision at a later date

 

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