Australian woman charged with killing kids to remain in custody

Sydney: The Australian woman who was charged with murdering eight children, seven of them her own, would remain in custody and undergo further psychiatric examination until her next hearing Jan 30, a court ruled Monday.

She is being kept in a hospital by authorities under an "involuntary treatment order", the court heard.

Eight murder charges against Raina Mersane Ina Thaiday, 37, were formally read in a court in the city of Cairns, Xinhua reported.

Thaiday is also known as Mersane Warria.

Thaiday was found with stab wounds, and is recovering in hospital as the police investigation continues.

The 37-year-old is alleged to have murdered four of her sons (aged 14, 12, 11 and 2), three daughters and a niece (aged 9, 8, 6 and 5 respectively).

The bodies were found at her home in the Cairns suburb of Manoora Friday morning by her eldest son, 20-year-old Lewis Warria.

Thaiday did not appear in court Monday, but was represented by Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Legal Service lawyer Steven MacFarlane.

The magistrate also rejected a plea by McFarlane that the matter be heard under mental health laws.

Local authorities are now considering demolishing the house where the children were killed, and replacing it with a memorial.

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