TWO men have been arrested and charged with kidnapping two people and trying to kill one of them by setting them on fire and dumping them in bushland near Murwillumbah, in northern NSW.
Police say the two victims were kidnapped by a group of men sometime on Sunday 23 July and thrown into the back of a white ute before being driving into bushland at Kunghur, around 25km south of Murwillumbah.
One of the victims, a 36-year-old man, managed to jump from the moving ute and escape by hiding in nearby bushland while the second, a 35-year-old man, was dumped on the side of Kyogle Road and set on fire.
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A passing motorist raised the alarm around 7.30 that night after noticing a small fire and finding the 35-year-old man lying on the side of the road, covered in burns.
The motorist and a local doctor treated the man at the scene before he was airlifted to the Royal Brisbane Hospital where he remains today in a serious condition with significant burns.
Upon investigating the scene, police found a white Holden Commodore ute which had been abandoned and torched.
Strike Force Photic was established by the State Crime Command’s Homicide Squad to investigate the case.
As part of their inquiries, detectives arrested a 29-year-old man on Wednesday night and a second 28-year-old man shortly after midday on Thursday.
Both of them have since been charged with one count each of attempted murder and kidnapping (special aggravated).
The older man was refused bail to appear in Tweed Heads Local Court on Wednesday 23 August, while the younger was refused bail to appear in the same court today.
Investigations are continuing and further are arrests expected, police say.
Anyone with any information that could assist police with their investigation is urged to come forward and contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.