Brae Taylor Lewis was sentenced in January to nine-and-a-half years in jail, but could walk free next month.
The now 22-year-old admitted responsibility for an attack on his girlfriend that left her with burns so bad she spent days in an induced coma and nearly a month in hospital.
The pair were both 17 years old and under the influence of meth at the time of the incident in May 2016.
Lawyers for Attorney-General Shannon Fentiman argued in Queensland’s Court of Appeal on Wednesday that Lewis’s sentence was unjust because it was “manifestly inadequate”.
Barrister Jodie Wooldrige QC questioned the remorse shown by Lewis, whether there was evidence of him having insight into his offending and the consideration given to his young age during sentencing.
But Lewis’s defence team argued his remorse was clearly demonstrated and the sentencing judge took everything relevant into account.
The appeal was immediately dismissed.
Lewis and his girlfriend Kyesha Finemore got into an argument when she asked to use a mobile phone they shared, the court heard during the earlier sentencing.
He threw a beer bottle containing fuel at her, the flammable liquid splashing on her.
As she put her hands up Lewis extended his left hand while flicking a lighter.
“The fumes which were emitting from the fuel in front of the flame ignited and caused the front of her body to become engulfed in flame,” Brisbane District Court Judge Michael Burnett said in January.
One witness told police Finemore’s skin was peeling from her arms and upper body.
The teenager was taken to hospital where she spent days in an induced coma.
Doctors found 21 per cent of her body was burnt.
She needed several surgical procedures and was left permanently disfigured with scarring to her arms, chest, abdomen, back and thighs.
Lewis successfully appealed an earlier conviction by a jury and an 11-year jail sentence.
He was due to face a retrial, but after a delay due to COVID-19, he instead pleaded guilty in January to one count of malicious act with intent.
In handing down the nine-and-a-half year sentence, Judge Burnett labelled the offending as “horrendous and disgraceful”, but said he took into account Lewis’s youthfulness, remorse, rehabilitation efforts while in custody and guilty plea although it was at a late stage.
With time already spent in custody since May 2016, he will be eligible for parole next month – after serving half the term.
The Appeal Court judges will publish their reasons for the dismissal at a later date.
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