Mark Stocco (L) Gino Stocco (R)
Mark Stocco (L) Gino Stocco (R)

'Modern day bushrangers' sentenced to 40 years jail

A FATHER and son crime duo - who have been compared to modern-day bushrangers - were both given a 40-year sentence for an eight-year crime spree which ended in a "cold blooded" murder.

Gino and Mark Stucco gave no reaction as they were sentenced for murder, destroying property with fire, two counts of discharge firearm to resist arrest and several offences related to guns, driving matters and stolen goods.

Gino, 59, and Mark, 37, received a head sentence of 40 years but Gino was given a non-parole period of 28 years, while Mark was sentenced to 30 years non-parole.

Justice David Davies said the pair had shown no remorse and referred to a psychiatrist's report which found the pair had developed an "anti-authority belief system" from years living isolated, itinerant lives in the bush.

The pair were itinerants who roamed the backwaters of Australia's eastern states seeking work on farms and would then turn on their employers over any perceived slight and vandalise their properties on a massive scale.

The pair stole from their employers and caused millions of dollars damage to sheds, machinery and farming equipment even one time drilling puncture holes in nearly 100 tyres in a deranged act of vengeance.

Their crime rampage culminated in the murder of a "caretaker" on a remote cannabis property in NSW and a 10-day police chase across two states during which they twice shot at officers.

Justice David Davies recounted the pair's life of crime during a 90 minute sentencing this afternoon.

He said the Stoccos ended up on the cannabis property called "Pinevale" 50km north east of Dubbo in September 2015 because they were seeking refuge after seeing themselves on the TV show Australia's Most Wanted.

The owners allowed the pair to stay if they helped the "caretaker" Rosario Cimone, 68, with the growing of cannabis hydroponically in a shed on the property.

The father and son at first got along with Mr Cimone but inevitably the working relationship soured when the pair began to feel the old caretaker was bossing them about.

One day following an argument with Mr Cimone Mark pulled out a stolen 12 gauge shotgun from under his bed and handed it to his father saying, "Dad, kill him".

Mark Stocco told police when Mr Cimone returned to the property in his car Gino shot him twice in the stomach.

The pair then stripped his body of clothes and dumped him in bushland before fleeing the property.

Justice Davies described the killing "cold-blooded, callous without rational justification".

A week after they left the property, the duo came to police attention when they were spotted by a highway patrol officer driving a vehicle with stolen number plates near Henty, 60km south of Wagga.

The police engaged in two chases with the Stoccos that day and were shot at twice by the pair.

The following day a manager at Pinevale, known only as Person B saw the media reports on the pair and tipped off police that they had been living at the cannabis property.

Police searched for the pair for almost two weeks during which time the Stoccos stole a vehicle and fuel in NSW and rammed a police car in Victoria.

The pair eventually returned to Pinevale and were arrested by police on October 28, 2015.

Psychiatric reports reveal since the pair have been in custody they have become, "model prisoners".

Dr Jonathon Adams wrote that the offenders had developed an "anti-authority belief system" over a number of years "partly because they separated themselves from pro-social and law abiding society which appears to have intensified their anti-authority standpoint".

TIMELINE TO ARREST

2011 and 2012: Mark and Gino Stocco are on the run from police who have issued warrants for their arrests over offences committed in Queensland.

Sept. 2015: The pair take refuge at cannabis property "Pinevale" 50km northeast of Dubbo

Oct. 7, 2015: They murder caretaker Rosario Cimone and go on the run.

Oct. 16: The Stoccos - armed with a high powered rifle and shotgun - shoot at NSW highway patrol officers near the Victorian border.

Oct. 17: Police find the pair's dumped Nissan Navara near Wagga Wagga.

Oct. 17: Police receive a tip-off from Person B

Oct. 18: The pair steal a white Toyota LandCruiser ute from a property in the NSW Riverina region.

Oct. 22: The pair are spotted by police at a checkpoint near Castella in Victoria but lose them in a high speed car chase.

Oct. 22: A Victorian police car is rammed near St James by a LandCruiser with numberplates stolen from Tumbarumba, NSW.

Oct. 25: Police set up a perimeter around a property in Tarcutta, NSW, after residents report seeing the stolen LandCruiser.

Oct. 28: After eight years on the run the Stoccos are arrested by NSW police at a property in Dunedoo near Dubbo in central west NSW.

News Corp Australia


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