A man has pleaded guilty to murder after mowing down pedestrians with a car outside Melbourne’s Flinders Street Station just before Christmas last year.
Saeed Noori, 33, drove his mother’s SUV into 16 pedestrians on December 21, including 83-year-old man Antonios “Anton” Crocaris, who later died from head injuries.
It was previously alleged he called out “Allahu Akbar” after the incident, before being restrained by off-duty police officer Francis Adams when Noori’s car slammed into a bollard.
The incident took place at the corner of Flinders and Elizabeth streets, one of the city’s busiest intersections, bringing the area to a standstill as emergency crews responded.
Noori appeared in the Supreme Court of Victoria on Friday, where he pleaded guilty to murder, 11 counts of recklessly causing serious injury and five of conduct endangering life.
At an earlier hearing, police alleged Noori’s home computer had images of car attacks in London, Barcelona and the US city of Charlottesville and he had “a certain degree of radicalisation”.
But his lawyers said he suffered from schizophrenia and had likely not eaten or slept for days.
Graphic CCTV footage of the car attack was played, showing the Suzuki ploughing into people, some of whom were upturned and sent flying.
On Friday, Justice Elizabeth Hollingworth confirmed Noori was not being charged with terrorism-related offences.
Noori came to Australia from Afghanistan as a refugee in 2004 and is now an Australian citizen.
He’ll return to court for a three-day plea hearing on February 12.