NZ-born man charged with attempted murder over Sydney ‘samurai sword attack’

A New Zealand-born real estate agent in Sydney has been charged with attempted murder after allegedly lashing out at two women with a samurai sword following an alcohol-fuelled night.

Karl Howard allegedly attacked his girlfriend and her friend inside his $2m Sydney home just after 5am on Monday.

The 44-year-old allegedly punched his 27-year-old partner in the head and tried to strangle her before he turned his attention to her friend.

It is claimed he attacked the 29-year-old friend with a samurai sword, stabbing her while she tried to intervene.

Police allege Howard fled the scene and dumped his belongings in a skip bin while the two women sought help from nearby residents.

The women were treated by paramedics at the scene before being taken to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital and treated for their injuries.

Police arrested Howard as he allegedly hid behind a parked car while he staggered home bloodiest from his own wounds, the Daily Telegraph reported.

During his arrest, the Kiwi-born real estate agent suffered a dislocated shoulder and was taken to hospital under police guard.

At the scene, police recovered a number of items, including a samurai sword which was seized for forensic examination.

The trio had been drinking since Sunday afternoon, The Daily Telegraph reported.

NSW Police have since charged Howard with assault occasioning actual bodily harm, wounding with intent to murder, and trespassing.

He was refused bail.

Howard – the principal at Ray White Balmain – was stood down by the real estate giant before charges were laid.

“Ray White Balmain principal Karl Howard was stood down from the business on Monday pending a police investigation. The suspension has been extended pending the resolution of charges against him,” a spokesperson from Ray White told

“The Ray White Group is an Australian family-owned and led business and it expects a high standard of personal conduct from its members. We do not condone violence in any form.

“We are concerned for the wellbeing of all involved and staff are being offered counselling services”

A friend of Howard told Daily Mail Australia the incident was “out of character” for the highly respected agent.

“We’re all really worried about him,” she said.

“We’ll be there to support him, it is just really out of character. He’s a successful, very talented man … it’s very sad for him to be honest.”

Howard’s Lawyer John Sutton told ABC it was too early to indicate whether his client would be fighting the charges against him, including attempted murder and assault occasioning actual bodily harm.

“I don’t have those instructions. He is in hospital, I don’t have those instructions,” he told ABC.

“He has got various physical injuries of his own, he has undergone surgery.

“I think he is worried about a lot more than losing his job, it’s is a very unfortunate circumstance.”

Howard met his girlfriend on a dating app in recent months, Daily Mail reported.

After Howard recovers from surgery in hospital, he will be moved to a prison before facing Newtown Court on April 8.

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