Australian man who attacked backpackers jailed for 17 years

Roman Heinze, the man who violently attacked two backpackers at Salt Creek a year ago, is to return to court to be sentenced for his crimes.

Heinze was convicted of six charges, including indecent assault, aggravated kidnapping and endangering life.

The identity of the 61-year-old from Morphett Vale in Adelaide's south was only revealed recently due to court suppression orders.

Justice Trish Kelly told the court Heinze is "morose, forlon, pathetic and utterly depraved".

Heinze, who was also convicted of indecently attacking another backpacker in an Adelaide home two years earlier, was sentenced to a maximum sentence of 22 years and four months in prison.

The two women, both aged 24, both told the court that they thought they were going to die during the attack, according to the ABC.

The court heard they set up camp on a remote stretch of beach at Salt Creek, and in the afternoon the German woman went to sleep in the back of Heinze's vehicle.

But he pulled out a knife and bound her wrists and ankles with rope, before cutting off her bikini and sexually assaulting her.

Heinze met his victims through the Gumtree website, where they had sought a ride to Melbourne, and drove them to Salt Creek.

When the German woman feel asleep in Heinze's vehicle, he tied up the Brazilian woman and sexually assaulted her. She said Heinze committed the attacks "solely in pursuit of the gratification of your own perverted sexual fantasies and desires".

The women manage to escape when a nearby fisherman heard screams, the BBC reported. Heinze got into the four-wheel drive and chased after her, hitting her with the auto and knocking her to the ground several times.

She warned other women to be cautious when using the internet to organise travel.

Kelly jailed Heinze for a total of 22 years and four months and set a non-parole period of 17 years. In March, a British backpacker who officials say had been sexually assaulted and held captive for weeks in the Outback was rescued after police pulled over the vehicle she was driving.

She continued: "In committing these crimes you have undermined yet again the reputation of this country as a safe, friendly and attractive destination for young backpackers from all over the world".

Vanessa Coleman

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