‘No one told me I bought Milat’s house’
EXCLUSIVE: Rebecca Grace bought a pleasant looking house in Sydney's southwest for $660,000 three years ago.
She now wishes she knew it's horrific backstory - it was notorious serial killer Ivan Milat's last home as a free man, where he stashed trophies from his seven victims inside the wall cavities, laundry, garage, cupboards and wardrobes.
Ms Grace, 47, feels Milat's impending death in a Sydney hospital will do little to rejuvenate her asset's haunted reputation.
"I don't think it will ever pass, it's like an infamous thing in our history," Ms Grace told The Daily Telegraph.
She thought she had bought the single storey, four-bedroom house in Cinnabar St, Eagle Vale for a bargain in May 2016 but the exhilaration was short lived.
"I was so excited, I rang my mum and said I've got a new house, it's got a pool and everything. She looked it up and rang me back and said 'oh my God, do you know whose house that is?'," Ms Grace said.
"And I paid too much for it, I had never bought a home before."
She is furious the estate agent never told her it was the home where Milat was arrested in 1994, as she gradually learnt its grisly secrets. He had built the house in 1992 with his late sister Shirley Soire and they lived there together.
Milat's lawyer, John Marsden, revealed in 2005 that he believed Soire, who had since died, was involved with the murders.
"I think that's the wall," Ms Grace said, pointing to a wall separating the double garage and living room where police found the bolt of a Ruger 10/22 rifle which had fired the spent cartridges found near the bodies of murdered backpackers Caroline Clark, Anja Habschied and Gabor Neugebauer.
A fold-down ladder from the garage ceiling leads to the home's attic, where Ms Grace believes Milat pushed the items into the home internal structures.
"I want to get out of here simply because of the fact that it was his house. That's scary to me, to know that someone's been in here who's got warped thinking and evilness," she said.
Among the mountain of evidence were sleeping bags belonging to two other victims, Simone Schmidl and Deborah Everist, were hidden in one bedroom along with Ms Schmidl's tent and water bottle with the name Simi inscribed on it and scratched out. Her cooking set was found in the pantry.
In the garage was a pillow slip containing five sash cords, one stained with the blood of Ms Clark.
Ms Grace plans to give the house a modern makeover but has a bad feeling about the home's market value.
"The market's bad at the moment, I think I could probably get a little bit more (than I paid) but not like what you'd normally get in growth," Ms Grace said.
"It's a four-bedroom house in Eagle Vale, it has a double garage and the main bedroom has an ensuite and walk-in robe.
The other three bedrooms are down the hall, it's separated if you had children or family.
"It's got a nice outdoor entertainment area and its close to the shops. It's got a lot of good things about it … but that's before I knew it was Ivan Milat's house."