Irish News

Saturday 12 July 2014

Homeless man charged with stabbing of Irishwoman in Australian hostel

Published 04/10/2013|09:25

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A man has been arrested and multiple victims have been stabbed during a frenzied attack at the Westend Backpackers Hotel on Pitt Street, Sydney CBD. A woman received a cut to the face whilst a man was stabbed in the neck and another stabbed in the arm. A witness, Nattaput Panpanussak (29) (black T-Shirt and Yellow pattern) who fought off the man was said to have saved others from serious injury and received injuries himself. Pics Bill Hearne
Irish backpacker Aifric Butler-Rees (Pic Credit: news.com.au/Bill Hearne)

AN Irishwoman is recovering after she was stabbed in the face with glass during an argument in an Australian hostel in Sydney.

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Irish backpacker, Aifric Butler-Rees (24) was allegedly stabbed by 36-year old Timothy Kelly in the vicious assault at the Pitt Street hostel in the Haymarket district about 2.15am (AEST) on Thursday.

Two 19-year-old German men Christoph Leibrech and Lukas Kofink also suffered stab wounds in the attack.

These pictures from news.com.au show the damage inflicted to the tourists before a Thai tourist intervened causing the attacker to flee the brawl.

According to Australian media, police arrested Kelly after heroic backpacker Nattaput Penpanussak, 29, stepped in. He suffered extensive cuts to his hand, arm and torso as a result.

"I'm lucky, he wanted to kill me," Mr Penpanussak told The Daily Telegraph.

Kelly is listed as living in a homeless shelter in Darlinghurst. He was refused bail in Central Local Court yesterday as court documents revealed details of the gruesome attack.

He was arrested and charged with three counts of wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm in relation to the three tourists and Mr Penpanussak.

Homeless Kelly was also charged with assaulting pub security worker Mustafa Akkan, according to court documents.

Sydney City Local Area Commander Superintendent Mark Walton told reporters on Thursday that a man had been charged over the attack.

Supt Walton said it was not known if alcohol was involved but "mental health" issues may have been a factor.

The three backpackers are reportedly still in hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

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