A WA man accused of the notorious slayings of his wife and her best friend in far north Queensland more than two decades ago has surrendered to police.

Alan Leahy, who has been living in WA, handed himself in at Cairns Police Station on Friday, just in time to meet a coroner’s deadline.

He is now in custody awaiting a bail hearing next week.

Earlier this month, State Coroner Michael Barnes committed Mr Leahy to stand trial over the deaths of his wife Julia-Anne Leahy and her friend Vicki Arnold.

However, it will be up to the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions to decide whether he stands trial.

“When the brief of evidence is received ... it will be considered and a decision made as to whether it will proceed,” a statement from the office said.

The bodies of Julia-Anne Leahy and Ms Arnold were found in a four-wheel-drive in remote bush on the Atherton Tablelands, near Cairns, on August 9, 1991.

Mr Barnes overturned previous coronial findings that the women died in a murder-suicide.

He was able to commit Mr Leahy to stand trial as the inquest was heard under the Coroners Act 1958, not the 2003 version now in place.

A week ago, Mr Leahy’s lawyer Malcolm Liston said his client denied any involvement in the deaths.

The West Australian

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