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Australian court finds man guilty of assaulting female backpackers

A court in southern Australia has found the man guilty of assault and kidnapping, but cleared him of attempted murder. The two backpackers, one of whom was German, had met the man online.

Supreme Court Australien Oberster Gerichtshof (Getty Images/M. de Klerk)

The Supreme Court building in Adelaide, Australia

The South Australian Supreme Court on Saturday found the 60-year-old man guilty on six charges over an incident that occurred near Adelaide in February 2016.

The 11-member court heard that the man, whose identity has been withheld, made contact with two female backpackers, one German and one Brazilian, through the classifieds website Gumtree. The women were looking for a ride from Adelaide to Melbourne.

After picking them up, the man drove the women to a secluded area called Salt Creek, at which point he sexually assaulted the Brazilian woman and attacked the German woman with a hammer. Fishermen in the area managed to come to their rescue and alerted the police in time.

After 12 hours of deliberations, the court found the man guilty of indecent assault, aggravated kidnapping and endangering life. However, he was acquitted of attempted murder.

The man remains in custody. His sentencing will come at a later date.

blc/kl  (AFP, dpa)

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