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Queensland backpackers arsonist who killed 15 may walk free within weeks

A mass killer who lit a fire at a Queensland backpackers, which killed 15, could be freed within weeks.

Robert Paul Long set the Palace Backpackers Hostel in Childers, north of Brisbane, alight on June 23, 2000.

With victims hailing from across the globe — Australia, the UK, the Netherlands, Ireland, South Korea and Japan — the horrific fire sent shock waves around the world.

Long fled after the fire, but was found by a police dog while hiding in bushland a week later.

He was found guilty of arson and on two counts of murder for the killing of twins Kelly and Stacey Slarke.

Now, 20 years on from the fire, the 56-year-old is eligible for parole.

Press PLAY below for more from The Courier-Mail’s crime and courts editor, Kate Kyriacou.

Image: Nine