Four people have been charged with riot and arson offences in Aurukun amidst community unrest following the death of a 37-year-old local man on New Year’s Day.
Police will allege a large group of people took to the streets arming themselves with makeshift weapons such as sticks and metal bars once news spread of the man’s death.
It will further be alleged the group dispersed for a period of time before reforming and breaking into houses and vehicles, damaging property and in some instances starting fires.
Six dwellings were set on fire, sustaining varying degrees of damage including some being destroyed, two other dwellings sustaining fire damage to the outside.
A 17-year-old boy has been charged with one count of arson, one count of riot, three counts of enter dwelling and three counts of wilful damage.
A 37-year-old man has been charged with one count each or arson and riot.
A 40-year-old man has been charged with two counts of arson, one count of riot, three counts of enter with intent and three counts of wilful damage.
They appeared in Aurukun Magistrates Court yesterday and have been remanded in custody in Cairns.
A 47-year-old man has been charged with one count each of riot and wilful damage and will appear in Aurukun Court on January 15.
Police continue to work with the Aurukun community to settle the unrest with community leaders and elders negotiating with all parties.