A Melbourne father killed his daughter and son-in-law as they celebrated their first wedding anniversary because he was angry that his permission for the marriage was never sought.
Lindita Musai, 25, was executed on her doorstep on December 31, 2019 and her husband Veton, 29, died in hospital the next day.
Mrs Musai’s father, 57-year-old Osman Shaptafaj, pleaded guilty to the double murder in February and faced the Supreme Court for a pre-sentencing hearing on Wednesday.
In the hours before the murders, the couple left the hotel where they had celebrated their one-year wedding anniversary catching an Uber to the Yarraville home they shared with Mr Musai’s parents, Crown Prosecutor Catherine Parkes told the court.
That same morning Shaptafaj was driving around in his car, carrying an unregistered, loaded handgun and ammunition.
He drove to the Musai family’s home about 8:30am but then left and returned to wait for the couple.
When the Uber arrived at the house, just before 10:30am, the couple walked to the front door and rang the doorbell.
While they were waiting at the door, Shaptafaj got out of his car and walked behind them, then shot the couple in the back of their heads from close range.
He then walked away from the house to a nearby park and turned the gun on himself, with neighbours calling triple zero.
Shaptafaj was arrested and taken to hospital where bullets were extracted from his head and his right eye was removed. He now lives with an acquired brain injury.
Justice Andrew Tinney said Shaptafaj indicated to “other sources” he was “put out that his permission had not been sought to marry his daughter”.
He found out about his daughter’s marriage third-hand, possibly through a community member, his barrister Tanya Skvortsova said.
She said Shaptafaj’s memory issues made it difficult to know when he was given the news, but it was not close to the date of the murder.
Ms Parkes said the shooting was “deliberate and brutal” and “based on the apprehension they had disrespected him”.
“He was clearly angry towards the victims and he carried out an inconceivable attack,” she said.
Ms Skvortsova said Shaptafaj was suffering from a severe depressive disorder at the time, was unmedicated and had disengaged with treatment.
However, Justice Tinney said he could no see clear evidence to link his depressive state to the double murder.
He said it was clearly a pre-planned event, given they were returning from their wedding anniversary and he was waiting at the house for them.
Drilon Musai told the court, between tears, when his younger brother Veton died “he took half of me with him”.
Shaptafaj had a history of family violence, including physical abuse towards his ex-wife and daughter.
The last time he saw his estranged daughter, eight years earlier, Shaptafaj threw her against a wall in an argument about why the then-17-year-old was living with her mother and not him, the court heard.
The maximum penalty for the murders is life in prison, but Ms Skvortsova asked the judge to take into account Shaptafaj’s guilty plea and his age.
Justice Tinney will announce the sentence in early 2022.