Wakeley terror attack: Fresh charges for accused teen church stabber who had 52k images, 7500 videos on phone

Duncan Murray
AAP
Thousands of images and videos on the phone of a 16-year-old boy accused of stabbing a bishop on a live-streamed sermon are the focus of a police investigation.
Thousands of images and videos on the phone of a 16-year-old boy accused of stabbing a bishop on a live-streamed sermon are the focus of a police investigation. Credit: Bianca De Marchi/AAP

Fresh charges have been levelled against a 16-year-old boy accused of stabbing a bishop during a live-streamed sermon.

A court was told on Friday the teen will face charges of wounding with intent to murder and wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, in addition to an existing charge of committing a terrorist act.

The court was also told investigators have identified 52,000 images and 7500 videos on the teen’s phone, some of which will require a terrorism evidence notice to access.

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“That does take some time,” the crown prosecutor told Parramatta Children’s Court.

The teen will remain behind bars, accused of stabbing Assyrian bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel and priest Isaac Royel during a live-streamed service at Christ the Good Shepherd Church on April 15.

Fr. Isaac Royel (left) and Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel (file image)
Bishop Mar Mari Emmanuel and priest Isaac Royel (right) were stabbed during a live-streamed sermon. (HANDOUT/CHRIST THE GOOD SHEPHERD CHURCH) Credit: AAP

The fresh intent to murder charge relates to Bishop Emmanuel, while the intent to cause grievous bodily harm charge relates to Father Royel.

The stabbing, which investigators say was religiously motivated, left Bishop Emmanuel seriously injured before the teenager was subdued.

The teen had received intermittent treatment for mental health issues for a number of years, his lawyer said during an earlier court appearance.

Police have also charged five other juveniles in relation to the stabbing.

Two males, aged 17 and 14 years, were charged with possessing or controlling violent extremist material obtained or accessed using a carriage service.

One boy, aged 17, was charged with conspiring to engage in an act in preparation for, or planning, a terrorist act and custody of a knife in a public place.

Two boys, both aged 16, face offences for conspiring to engage in any act in preparation for or planning a terrorist act.

A further six people were charged over violent riots outside the church following the alleged stabbing, taking the tally of those facing court over the ugly melee to 29 people.

The alleged stabber’s matter is due to return to court on July 26.

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