- Category : Passions-Criminal-Perpetrator-Homicide-serial
- Type : PSP
- Profile : 1/4 - Investigating / Opportunist
- Definition : Split - Small (48)
- Incarnation Cross : RAX Service 4
- Birth Year: 1944
- Birthday: 27. December
- Birthplace: Sydney, Australia
- Category: Passions-Criminal-Perpetrator-Homicide-serial
- Profile: 1-4
- Type: Splenic Projector
- Inc.Cross: Service 4
- Definition: Double Split - Small (48)
- Variables: BRR-MRL
- 1762 Acceptance
- 4764 Abstraction
- 3254 Transformation
- 1333 The Prodigal
- 1858 Judgment
Australian serial killer, known as the "backpacker murderer." When a pair of trail runners discovered the decomposing corpses of Caroline Clark and Joanne Walters buried under sticks and leaves in Belanglo State Forest on 9/19/1992, it was only the beginning of what would eventually result in the capture of Australia's most famed serial killer. Over the next month searchers would discover five more bodies stowed away in the woods of the park, ending the mystery of the disappearances of foot travelers in the area.
The bodies discovered by the runners were identified as Clark and Walters, both of whom were British and traveling together on foot. They had last been seen over five months before. Soon the remains of hitchhikers James Gibson and Deborah Everist, last seen near the forest in 1989, were found. Almost a month later Simone Schmidl, a hitchhiker who disappeared in January of 1991, was discovered under the now-familiar pile of brush. When a pair of jeans found near Schmidl's body property of yet another missing person, the searching continued. Predictably, the jeans' owner, German Anja Habschied, and her boyfriend Gabor Neugebauer were found nearby dead. The young couple had been missing since December of 1991.
Aside from the obvious similarities between the way all the victims had disappeared and been disposed of, their causes of death were a bit dissimilar. (Clark had been stabbed in the chest area and shot in the head several times; Gibson had been repeatedly stabbed; Everist had been slashed in the face in addition to her stab wounds; Schmidl had also been stabbed; Habschied was decapitated; and Neugebauer had been shot in the head five times with the same weapon that killed Walters. The stabbing victims all had a unique injury, though, a stab wound to the upper back that severed the victim's spinal cord and rendered them helpless. Also, many of the victims were partially undressed with their pants buttoned but not zipped. Evidence of crude bondage and strangulation was present in most of the cases.
Authorities were stumped by the case until 1993 when a man named Paul Onions identified Ivan Milat as the person who attacked him after picking Onions up near the forest three years before. Milat and his brother Richard were already suspects in the killings, though police knew that Richard had been at work on the days of the abductions. Ivan Milat was soon charged with Onion's assault and all seven murders. Faced with some very damning evidence at trial Milat feebly tried to explain on the stand that he was the victim of an elaborate set-up, perpetrated by his own family. Predictably, he was found guilty on all counts on 7/27/1995, and sentenced to prison for life.
Milat has stated plans to escape at every opportunity but thus far has not succeeded. He has, however, attempted to kill himself at least twice after swallowing such materials as razor blades and staples. In June of 2001 Milat appeared at an inquest into the deaths of three women in 1978 and 1979. Robyn Hickie, 17, Amanda Robinson, 14, and Leanne Goodall, 20, all disappeared from an area north of Sidney under similar circumstances as Milat's known victims. Though Milat attended the inquest, he offered nothing to help investigators and denied having known the women or ever having picked up a hitchhiker in that area.
AUSTRALIAN SERIAL KILLERS: Ivan Robert Marko MILAT, The story....
In 1992, Caroline Clarke and Joanne Walters, who were British travelers, met in Australia and teamed together with the aim of touring around the south of the country. In April that year, they left a backpackers hotel in Sydney and headed for the south-east of New South Wales. In September their bodies were found buried in an area known as "Executioners drop."
In October 1993, two more bodies were discovered along the same stretch of the remote Belanglo Forest. The bodies were identified as those of 19 year old James Gibson and Deborah Everist, also 19. Both had gone missing since 1989. It then became apparent that a serial killer had been responsible for all these murders.
On 1 November the same year, a fifth body was found. This body was only able to be identified by dental records. It was established that this body, was that of Simone Schmidl, who was a twenty year old German national who had vanished in January of 1991.
An intensive search of the area (by more than 300 police officers) was conducted and two skeletons were found on November 4. These proved to be remains of 21 year old Gabor Kurt Neugebauer and his 20 year old girlfriend, Anja Susanne Habschied, who were German tourists that had vanished two years previously. Anja had been decapitated. At the same time police revealed that all victims had been killed by multiple stab wounds.
Progress continued to be made in the forensic examinations of evidence gathered at the scene - Cartridges from a .22 Ruger rifle had been found
near the body of 22 year old Caroline Clarke and these were being tested against some cartridges that had been taken from a farmhouse outside Sydney. A possible eighth victim was provisionally added to the list of victims in November. An examination of unsolved murders, turned up the name of Diane Pennacchio.
Diane was a 29 year old mother whose body had been found in a wood in 1991. She had been stabbed to death and the body (as in the case of previously discovered bodies) had been placed face down with hands placed behind her back. All bodies had been found near a fallen tree. A triangular canopy of sticks had been built over the bodies and covered with ferns.
It was not until the end of February 1994, that there was a breakthrough in the police investigation. Two British hitch-hikers came forward, following accounts of the murders. A 20 year old woman, stated to police that while she had been backpacking in January 1990, in New South Wales, she was offered a lift, which she had accepted. While in the vehicle the driver had behaved strangely and because of this she had got out of the vehicle and ran into the Belanglo Forest. As she had done so, the driver fired shots at her but they had missed.
The second British tourist was Paul Onion, who told police that in 1990 he had accepted a lift from a driver in the same area. The driver of the vehicle had produced a gun from the glove compartment of the vehicle. Paul ran away from the vehicle but the driver had fired shots at him. Paul was able to identify this man from police photographs and identify the vehicle that had been used in that incident.
In May 1994 police carried out seven dawn raids on properties and as a result three men were taken into custody. One of these men was 49 year old Ivan Milat, who was charged with armed robbery and discharging a firearm - he was later to be charged with the murders. Another of the men was Ivan Milat's brother; Walter. During the raids police found a .22 caliber rifle that matched the type used in the backpacker murders.
Ivan Milat appeared in court on May 23. He did not enter a plea. Police investigations continued and on May 30 Ivan Milat was charged with the murder of seven backpackers. At the beginning of February 1995 Milat was remanded in custody until June that same year. In March 1996 the trial of Milat finally opened and in July he was sentenced to "life" imprisonment.
Milat was a known gun fanatic who used the nickname "Texas". This nickname had been engraved on one of the guns used in an attempted murder. * It was discovered that one of the guns used in the killing of Caroline Clarke, bore Milat's fingerprints. * At the time of his court appearance Milat was 49 and described as a "road mender" and former truckie.