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Man accused of South Australia backpacker attack sought love online

The man accused of a terrifying attack on two European backpackers at a remote South Australian beach had been searching for love online, describing himself on a dating website as being respectful to women and seeking a "future wife".

The 59-year-old man, who cannot be named for legal reasons, has multiple social media accounts that document his life in South Australia, including recent camping trips to the same national park where he is alleged to have held the backpackers captive, sexually assaulted them and attempted to kill them on Tuesday.

South Australian police have now charged the man, from Morphett Vale in Adelaide's south, with attempted murder, unlawful sexual intercourse without consent and kidnapping.

He was arrested on Tuesday near Salt Creek in the Coorong National Park, south-east of Adelaide, where he is allegedly to have attacked the two women, who are believed to be aged in their 20s.

In contrast to the charges he now faces, the man describes himself online as a down-to-earth, kind and thoughtful man who was "respectful to women".


He says he is a father, and claims to have worked in the building industry all over Australia, as well as internationally.

In recent times, he had been seeking to connect online with women aged between 22 and 56 for friendship and dating, and possibly a serious relationship.

In his dating profile, which he logged on to as recently as last month, he says he "get[s] along with everyone, well almost hahaha", and was seeking a kind, loving thoughtful woman who was ready for marriage and who preferably could "cook Chinese food".

His perfect woman would love kids, like walks on the beach and watching the sun set, and be slender, athletic or have a "good body shape", he wrote.

The man also details his love for the outdoors, hiking, camping and fishing, activities in which he is shown participating on his Facebook page.

In one of the many photographs on his Facebook page, he is shown pointing a gun at the camera.

In court on Wednesday, police prosecutors asked that the man's name, image, vehicle and any details on how he met the alleged victims be suppressed from publication.

Police Superintendent James Blandford said the backpackers met the man on Tuesday and set up camp, with plans to spend the night at the beach, but then found themselves in a "dire" situation.

One of the women was able to escape and raised the alarm with a group of fishermen, who called police. The woman was naked, bleeding and screaming, "He's going to kill us all!" when she emerged from the sand dunes, one of the fishermen, Abdul-Karim Mohammed, told 7News.

"We were shocked when we seen her and then we go, 'There's something really bad going on here,' " Mr Mohammad said.

The traumatised woman also told the fishermen how her friend, also a young European backpacker, was still in the sand dunes near Salt Creek.

Rescuers soon found the second backpacker, who was seriously injured and barely conscious in the sand dunes. The women were flown to Flinders Medical Centre with serious injuries. One of the women has since been released from the medical centre.

Coorong District Council mayor Neville Jaensch said the fishermen who helped the women were heroes.

"We regard the Coorong as a very safe area ... and it is a tragedy. The heroes of this are the young men and the other members of the community," he told ABC Radio on Thursday.

With AAP