Convicted murderer Omar Benguit to appeal sentence today for killing student Jong-Ok Shin

Bournemouth Echo: LIFE: Omar Benguit LIFE: Omar Benguit

A CONVICTED murderer will appeal his sentence today for killing a South Korean student in 2002.

Omar Benguit was found guilty of killing Jong-Ok Shin in Bournemouth almost 12 years ago but has always protested his innocence.

His lawyers say that 26-year-old Oki, who was stabbed in the back as she walked home along Malmesbury Park Road in Charminster on July 12, 2002, was killed by Danilo Restivo.

Double-murderer Restivo, responsible for the deaths of Heather Barnett and Italian schoolgirl Elisa Claps, lived just three roads away at the time.

Benguit, now 42, was jailed for life in 2005 and told he would have to serve at least 20 years behind bars before being considered for parole. If judges at the Court of Appeal rule that his conviction is unsafe, he could walk free.

The prosecution in each of his three trials claimed Benguit, then 30, was high on crack cocaine and heroin and stabbed Oki because she rejected his advances.

The case was taken to court a third time in 2005 because two previous juries couldn’t reach a verdict, and he was eventually found guilty of the crime.

Detective Chief Inspector Kevin Connolly of Dorset Police will attend the hearing, which is expected to last around one day and be heard before the full court.

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