Murder charges are laid against the mother of seven of the Cairns stabbing victims.
Mersane Warria, who was arrested by police yesterday over the deaths of her seven children and a niece, has now been charged with murder.
She was charged in a bedside hearing at 11.30am this morning.
Warria currently remains in hospital, where she is being treated for non-life-threatening, self-inflicted stab wounds and undergoing mental health checks.
Queensland Treasurer Tim Nicholls was in Cairns on Saturday offering support from the Government, but would not be drawn on speculation the mother had been being investigated by child services.
“I am not in a position to be able to speculate on those matters. That will no doubt be something that will be explored by police in the days ahead,” he said.
Mr Nicholls said he could not confirm reports the mother was reported to child services two weeks ago.
“That is something I haven’t heard about and again I think that is something police will need to investigate,” he said.
Meanwhile, the families of the eight children who were killed have started to arrive in Cairns to begin a traditional mourning period ahead of their funerals. In Brisbane the Torres Strait Island Community is holding a memorial service at Inala today. Pastor Daniel Tapau said anyone was welcome to attend the services.
“Today we will remember the eight young victims dearly, especially in this Christmas season and many of our elders will attend the service today from all regions from the Torres Strait,” he said.
Other church services are being held in Cairns, Townsville, Mackay and Rockhampton.