Killers Try Again to Reduce Sentence & Fail Again


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When convicted of murder in the first degree and conspiracy to commit murder for life insurance money, the defendants require a great deal of chutzpah (unmitigated gall) to file multiple appeals to reduce or eliminate the life without parole sentences. In the latest effort, The People v. Leny Peterson Galafate, F081563, California Court of Appeals, Fifth District (June 9, 2022) the Court of Appeal wrote a detailed opinion discussing all of the arguments filed by the murderer expending more time and paper than a convicted murder who had already appealed unsuccessfully to different courts that was not deserved.




In 1989, appellant Leny Peterson Galafate and her then-husband, codefendant Roman Galafate III, were convicted after a joint jury trial of count 1, first degree premeditated murder, with the special circumstance that the murder was intentional and carried out for financial gain; and count 2, conspiracy to commit murder for financial gain.


Writ Petitions


Both defendants filed numerous post-judgment writ petitions challenging their convictions all of which failed.




In this case, the jury found true the financial gain special circumstance based on instructions that required the jury to find either that Leny was the actual killer, or she intentionally aided and abetted the actual killer in the commission of the murder.


Moreover, under the special circumstance instructions and finding, it is clear the jury convicted Leny of first degree premeditated murder by finding she had the intent to kill.




Leny is ineligible for resentencing as a matter of law and her arguments to the contrary are meritless.




People who commit insurance fraud are, by definition, immoral. Those who commit premeditated murder to collect on a life insurance policy are evil and have no morality. Leny proved the lack of morality to file multiple, detailed appeals of her sentence only to have the California Court of Appeal write a lengthy opinion pointing out her criminal conduct and she will serve the rest of her life in gray bar hotel, the California State Prison. Hopefully no court will even consider another appeal. She proves that insurance fraud is a violent crime.


(c) 2022 Barry Zalma & ClaimSchool, Inc.


Barry Zalma, Esq., CFE, is available at and [email protected].


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