Rapper accused of murdering Carlow-born teen in Australia out on bail

ireland
Lachlan Paul Soper-Lagas, 18, is charged with the 19-year-old’s murder but is argued to have shown “no concern” for the victim and fled following the fatal fall
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Sarah Slater

The grandparents of a teenage rapper, one of five charged with the murder of Carlow native Cian English in Australia last year offered their home as a six figure surety so he could be released on bail.

Lachlan Paul Soper-Lagas, 18, is charged with the 19-year-old’s murder but is argued to have shown “no concern” for the victim and fled following the fatal fall.

Originally from Bullock Park, on the edge of Carlow Town, Mr English who had been living in the eastern Brisbane suburb of Hawthorne, suffered traumatic injuries when he fell from a fourth floor balcony at the View Pacific resort in Surfers Paradise at around 3.15am Saturday, May 23rd last year during an alleged robbery.

The teenager lived with his parents Siobhan and Vinny and older brother Dylan. The family left Ireland 16 years ago, first to the Caribbean where Cian’s father worked for Digicel and then settled in Brisbane in 2011.

Fell to his death

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The teenager fell to his death when he was being robbed at knife point following a fourth floor apartment party where it is alleged three men, already charged with his murder, were high on prescription drugs. He attempted to escape but tragically fell from the fourth floor balcony.

Cian English suffered traumatic injuries when he fell from a fourth floor balcony last year during an alleged robbery

The four other accused Jason Ryan Knowles, 22, Hayden Paul Kratzmann, 20, along with two girls, who are minors re-appeared before Southport Magistrates Court and Children’s Court on Tuesday, according to a police spokesperson. All were remanded in custody.

However, Soper-Lagas re-appeared before Brisbane Supreme Court in a surprise move by his lawyers in a bid to gain the accused release from jail which was granted by Acting Justice Anthony Rafter.

Australian media are reporting that defence lawyer Michael Copley conceded the case against his client was “strong” but said he was “not a flight risk due to his strong family ties to the Queensland”.

He also informed the court that Soper-Lagas' family living in Brisbane and police have his passport in their possession.

Surety

“The fact they’re prepared to put it up as part of the surety demonstrates their confidence in their grandson’s willingness to comply with court orders,” Mr Copley said.

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Soper-Lagas has also been charged with armed robbery in company, deprivation of liberty, torture, stealing and entering dwelling with intent.

Details of what police will allege was “serious and protracted torture” by the accused were revealed at the Supreme Court on Thursday.

It is alleged Soper-Lagas threatened Mr English at knifepoint while two teenage girls in the apartment filmed the incident.The fatal fall was not captured on film.

Bail opposed

Bail was opposed by Crown prosecutor Danny Boyle noting there was a strong case against the accused.

He told the court video evidence captured the teenager threatening Mr English and he showed “no concern” for his welfare after the fall.

“He (Soper-Lagas) failed to call emergency services or to go down and check the welfare of the deceased,” Mr Boyle said.

“He then goes on to steal property. He is then concerned about concealing his identity as he leaves the unit and takes the other defendants with him … they go on to commit a further offence in order to obtain drugs.

Drug testing

“It can be looked at as being quite serious and protracted torture of the victims and making demands of them for their property.”

The court was told Mr Soper-Lagas had been involved with drugs from a young age.

Justice Rafter granted bail, noting he had no criminal history and ordered him to undergo drug testing and rehabilitation.

Some of the bail conditions include reporting to police daily and wearing a GPS tracker.

The five accused are to re-appear before Southport Magistrates Court on March 23rd.

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