Backpackers attacked in Australian outback

Backpackers attacked in Australian outback

The man accused of raping and assaulting two foreign backpackers has been caught, after subjecting the women to sickening violence along the remote stretch of Coorong National Park.

Fearing for their lives, the pair made a run for it but were separated, with some fishermen spotting one of the women in the dunes. She was naked, bleeding and screaming.

"We were telling her relax, what's going on. She's going, 'Someone's out there, he's going to kill us, get out of here, please get out of here'," one of the fishermen, Ali Mohammed, said.

"She had some scratches on her legs, looked like she'd been pulled around, dragged around," Abdul Karim Mohammed said.

The hunt began for her friend, but it appears the accused found her first -- when she emerged she was barely conscious and unable to speak.

The women were flown to Adelaide for treatment, the extent of their injuries unknown. Blood was spotted on the accused's 4WD, bogged in the sand.

A fishing knife and a hook were among the items left behind at his nearby camp.

The 59-year-old has been charged with sexual assault, kidnap and attempted murder. He's already faced court via a video link, dressed in a hospital gown whilst restrained.

Locals say he's been coming to that park for decades, and they now fear what else may have happened along the isolated stretch of coast.