She added: “I don’t think there is any justice when it comes to killing someone you love, because nothing given will ever be justified.”
The child was in Ali’s care while she drove her to several mobile phone shops and casinos in Louth and Monaghan, frequently leaving Hunter in the vehicle.
Using CCTV footage, police were able to document Ali’s movements before the murder.
The footage showed Ali entering a casino in Castleblayney, where he is seen gambling and losing money for a period of two and a half hours.
Meanwhile, Hunter is left alone in a car outside.
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Ali was shown in other CCTV footage returning to the vehicle.
“Hunter’s young life is stolen later that night after he returned to the Keady home,” said Insp. Mark Gibson said following the sentencing.
Hunter wasn’t breathing, according to Ali, who showed up at Nicole’s grandmother’s house the next morning.
Later that morning, Craigavon Regional Hospital verified his death.
Ali, originally from Pakistan, was due to stand trial in April but instead pleaded guilty after jury selection.
Hunter had fallen off a couch while changing his diaper, according to his death report.
This version of events was rejected by the judge at Newry Crown Court.
“Your conduct with his care was extremely reckless. You got rid of the cell phones and went to the casinos. You left Hunter in the car,” the judge said.
Medical evidence confirmed bruising to multiple parts of Hunter’s body and significant internal injuries from the trauma.
“They weren’t caused by Hunter falling off the couch. Death was caused by head trauma. You have yet to provide a credible explanation for the injuries,” the judge added.
“You had a responsibility to Hunter that day. His mother had a difficulty and you agreed to take care of him.
“There may have been an incident on the couch, I don’t know. But it’s clear that at some point you lost control.
The Public Prosecution Service (PPS) said it was considering appealing against the sentence because it was too lenient.
In a statement, it said that while sentencing is a matter for judges, the Director of Public Prosecutions can refer cases to the Court of Appeal on “the grounds that it might be unduly lenient”.
“An unreasonable sentence is one that falls outside the range of punishments that a judge, considering all relevant factors and considering the sentencing guidelines, might reasonably consider appropriate.
“We are considering whether there is a legal basis to refer the sentence in this case to the Court of Appeal for review.”
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