A neo-Nazi enthusiast - who has a distinctive tattoo of a word on his forehead - inflicted horrific violence on his roommate for a shocking reason.
Michael Shayne Halcrow and Gavin Daniel Menzies did not interact with each other and sat on separate sides of the dock during their sentencing at Brisbane District Court on Tuesday.
Both received jail terms of four-and-a-half years but with time already served, they will be eligible for parole over the next month.
Halcrow, 41, who has a distinctive tattoo of the word damaged across his forehead and long hair, sat silently through proceedings.
Menzies, dressed in a black suit and sporting several face tattoos, did not react through the sentencing.
Both men pleaded guilty to burglary, assault occasioning actual bodily harm in company, threatening violence and armed robbery in company.
Halcrow, 38, also pleaded guilty to a raft of other charges including fraud, stealing, possessing dangerous drugs and utensils and failing to safely dispose of a syringe.
The court was told Halcrow, Menzies and the victim were living in the same home in East Brisbane in May 2019.
On May 10, the pair kicked down the door of the victims room demanding to know the location of a missing T-shirt depicting a Nazi swastika.
Crown prosecutor Michael Gawrych said the pair kept the victim in the room for hours, brandishing wooden batons while punching and abusing him.
It culminated in Menzies, 41, pushing his thumb into the victims stitched wound, causing immense pain and demanding he get in a foetal position on the floor.
Mr Gawrych said the pair stole the victims phone and tablet which were later pawned.
When police arrived, Menzies threatened to bash the victims skull in if he did not stay hidden.
It was thuggish behaviour over a T-shirt, he said.
The victim barricaded himself in the room after the incident, too scared to answer the door when officers arrived.
Police located drugs, utensils, a used syringe and Nazi paraphernalia when they searched Halcrows property in September that year.
Mr Gawrych said Halcrow had also stolen a bicycle and helmet in April 2019 which were pawned.
During interviews, Halcrow denied his offending but Menzies made some admissions to police.
Mr Gawrych said a face mask depicting Adolf Hitler and a copy of Nazi manifesto Mein Kampf were found by police during the search.
The court was told the items had different meanings for Halcrow, who is from New Zealand.
But Judge Michael Byrne rejected the claim after seeing multiple photographs of Nazi paraphernalia that were found at his home.
He clarified it was not an offence to own the material and Halcrow was not being sentenced for any perceived affiliation to neo-Nazism.
It does provide a background as to why the offending occurred, Judge Byrne said.
The extent of the material... showed you had some interest in the area but youre not being sentenced for that.
Halcrow told a psychiatrist in February 2021 that he did not affiliate with neo-Nazism.
His defence lawyer, Cecelia Bernardin, said her client had a lesser involvement than Menzies and was using the drug ice daily at the time.
He does accept the offending would have been a very terrifying experience, she said.
She said Halcrow suffered from depression and PTSD and had struggled after separating from his partner and losing a friend who took his own life.
Nick Bennett, acting for Menzies, said the offending came in the backdrop of traumatic events in his life.
He said Menzies was thrown into an open fire by his father when he was young, resulting in his parents separation, and he was exposed to heavy drug use and criminal activity through his life.
By Grade 8 he was using heroin and was expelled in Grade 9 he hasnt returned to mainstream education since, Mr Bennett said.
Mr Bennett said Menzies found refuge in a Punk subgroup but spiralled further into substance addiction.
Judge Byrne sentenced both men to four-and-a-half years jail with a non-parole period of 18 months.
Their periods in pre-sentence custody since 2019 was declared as time served.
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