Australia’s most notorious serial killer, Ivan Milat, has died in prison following a battle with cancer.
The 74-year-old died in Sydney’s Long Bay hospital where he had been undergoing chemotherapy for oesophagus and stomach cancer.
Milat became notorious down under following a spate of serial killings which became known as the Backpacker Murders.
Between 1989 and 1993, Millat murdered seven backpackers and their bodies were found in makeshift graves in the Belanglo state forest in New South Wales during the 1990s.
Milat picked the backpackers up while there were hitchhiking. Five of his victims were foreign backpackers while two were Australian.
His victims included Deborah Everist, James Gibson, Simone Schdmidl, Anja Habschied, Gabor Neugebauer, Joanne Walters and Caroline Clarke.
Ivan Milat killed seven backpackers who were hitchhiking in Australia. Pic: Austral Int/REX/Shutterstock
In September 1992, runners discovered a concealed corpse while they were orienteering in the national park. The following morning, police found a second victim.
Milat’s third and fourth victims weren’t discovered until a year later in October 1993. The fifth, sixth and seventh victims were found in November 1993.
All of the victims had been stabbed in the torso, while another had been shot. One had been decapitated. There was also evidence of sexual assault.
One British backpacker, Paul Onions, had been able to escape Ivan Milat’s grasp and called Australian police to provide them with a description of the man who had picked him up while he was hitchhiking.
A colleague of Ivan Milat’s tipped off police saying that they felt he should be investigated over the murders.
Following police surveillance of his house and a large police investigation, Ivan Milat was arrested and charged with the murders.
Ivan Milat’s victims were discovered in makeshift graves in the 1990s. Pic: Fairfax Media via Getty Images/
In 1996, he was sentenced to seven consecutive life sentences and 18 years without parole.
In May 2019, he was diagnosed with terminal oesophageal cancer.