Moroccan-born Said Mechaout has been sentenced to a maximum 30 years behind bars over a year after he murdered Italian man Stefano Leo in Turin because he was “white” and “happy”.
The murder took place on February 23rd on the banks of the river Po in Turin but it wasn’t until around a month later that 27-year-old Mechaout, a naturalised Italian citizen born in Morocco, confessed to the killing.
Italian prosecutors Ciro Santoriello and Enzo Bucarelli both pushed for the maximum sentence of 30 years in the case after remarking that Mechaout showed little to no remorse following the murder.
Mariagrazia Chiri, the mother of Stefano Leo, was also present at the sentencing and commented “We have always been confident. And the sentence gives us that reason. Justice has run its course,” Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera reports.
Basilio Foti, the lawyer for Mechaout, said that he expected the sentenced to be reduced on appeal, however, noting that Mechaout came forward himself and confessed to the crime.