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Man sentenced to 8 years in prison for love triangle killing

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WINNIPEG--A Winnipeg man was sentenced to eight years in prison today for a love triangle killing in which he tricked his way into a house armed with a steel bar, strangled the drunken resident and then set his body on fire.

Roberto Nieto will actually do far less time behind bars. He has spent the past three years in custody, which was given double-time credit of six years. A judge then sentenced him to another two years in jail effective today, but he will be eligible for parole after serving one-third of that time.

Nieto, 32, was originally charged with second-degree murder and went on trial in 2007, only to be cleared of any wrongdoing after a jury accepted his claim of self-defence. The Crown appealed, and a new trial was ordered last year after the Manitoba Court of Appeal cited errors made by the judge during the charge to the jury.

Nieto, 32, was set for his new murder trial this spring but cut a deal with the Crown to plead guilty to the reduced charge of manslaughter.

Jankow Milas, 45, died in June 2004 after a violent struggle inside his Chalmers Avenue home in East Kildonan. Nieto never disputed killing Milas, but had previously claimed innocence on the grounds he was provoked and had to defend himself.

Nieto was upset with Milas because he had developed a relationship with his former girlfriend, who was neglecting her young son in order to spend time with the much older man. He grew incensed upon learning Milas had allegedly raped her after she passed out following a night of drinking with him, court was told.

Nieto admits he went looking for his girlfriend on the night of the killing and found her at Milas's home. He grabbed a steel weight bar and identified himself as "Winnipeg police" to trick Milas into opening the door. He attacked without warning and quickly overpowered the heavily intoxicated Milas, who pleaded for help and promised to stay away from the woman.

Nieto didn't relent, choking the life out of Milas before burning his body and later disposing of his bloody clothes in the river.

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