A schizophrenic killer who stabbed two backpackers to death at a hostel will likely not be repatriated back to his home country until his treatment is over.
A schizophrenic killer who stabbed two backpackers to death at a hostel will likely not be repatriated back to his home country until his treatment is over.

Hostel killer to stay in mental health jail

A SCHIZOPHRENIC killer who stabbed two backpackers to death at a North Queensland hostel will likely not be repatriated back to his home country until his treatment is over.

Smail Ayad, 30, had all criminal charges against him dropped in 2018 after the Mental Health Court found he was of unsound mind when he killed British traveller Mia Ayliffe-Chung and Tom Jackson at Home Hill two years earlier.

He has been locked in a correctional mental health facility since 2016, and is meant to be repatriated back to his home country of France, but the government has been tight-tipped on when this will occur.

Smail Ayad arrested for the stabbing Murder Mia Ayliffe-Chung, 21 at a hostel complex in Home Hill
Smail Ayad arrested for the stabbing Murder Mia Ayliffe-Chung, 21 at a hostel complex in Home Hill

Ayad claimed to have no or limited memory of dragging 21-year-old Ms Ayliffe-Chung from her bed and stabbing her multiple times in the chest, before stabbing Mr Jackson in the head as he tried to save her life.

The hostel manager was also stabbed in the incident.

Ayad then jumped headfirst from the first floor balcony where he stabbed Ms Ayliffe-Chung, breaking his neck and back in the fall.

Police forensic officers investigate outside the rooms where the stabbings took place, the day after Mia Ayliffe-Chung was stabbed to death at a backpackers hostel in Home Hill, outside of Townsville. Lyndon Mechielsen/The Australian
Police forensic officers investigate outside the rooms where the stabbings took place, the day after Mia Ayliffe-Chung was stabbed to death at a backpackers hostel in Home Hill, outside of Townsville. Lyndon Mechielsen/The Australian

He then got up and stabbed the hostel owner's dog.

The criminal charges against Ayad were dropped after a judge found he was suffering paranoid schizophrenia at the time of the attack.

He smoked up to four joints a day for four years leading up to the attack, and was under the delusion that farmers and hostel staff wanted to kill him and put him inside a pizza oven.

In findings released in September, Queensland Coroner Nerida Wilson said Ayad would be repatriated to France, with the final decision in the hands of Australian Border Force.

Mia Ayliffe-Chung, a 21-year-old British woman who was killed during the frenzied attack.
Mia Ayliffe-Chung, a 21-year-old British woman who was killed during the frenzied attack.

A spokesman from Australian Border Force said on Tuesday that non-citizens who do not hold visas will be removed from the country, but it was just a matter of when, saying outstanding matters delayed this process.

Queensland Health could not comment on Ayad's mental health treatment, confirm he was at the facility or when it was expected to be completed.

"Repatriation is the responsibility of Australian Border Force. Queensland Health is responsible for ensuring appropriate mental health treatment and care while the person remains in Queensland, and cooperates with relevant authorities as required in relation to the person's deportation," a spokeswoman said.

Smail Ayad.
Smail Ayad.

The Bulletin understands Ayad does not have a valid visa, and remains in the same psychiatric prison ward at The Park, in Brisbane, more than four years after the fatal stabbing.

When questioned about the situation, a spokeswoman from the Attorney General's office said the matter was for the Health Minister, and the Opposition said the matter was a federal government issue.

Originally published as Hostel killer to stay in mental health jail

British backpacker, Tom Jackson, who died in hospital almost a week after he was stabbed while trying to protect fellow British backpacker Mia Ayliffe-Chung during an attack.
British backpacker, Tom Jackson, who died in hospital almost a week after he was stabbed while trying to protect fellow British backpacker Mia Ayliffe-Chung during an attack.

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