Authors note: This essay is the true story of one of Australia's most well known serial killers and thus if details of murders, or indeed of a murderer, might offend you, or concern you please don't continue reading. This essay was written as part of my Criminology degree at University.


Ivan Milat and The Backpacker Murders.


We are, quite simply, fascinated with murder. Think of all the television shows dealing with crime and murder, and the plethora of crime fiction. When a murder occurs it is front-page news. Why are we so fascinated with murder? Well perhaps it is because it is the sort of thing that the ordinary human being cannot comprehend, and thus we have a morbid fascination with the subject. Serial killers such as John Wayne Glover (the Granny killer) or Paul Denyer (the Frankston serial killer) or mass murderers such as Julian Knight (the Hoddle street killings) or Martin Bryant (the Port Arthur massacre) grab our attention even more. We often wish we could go into the mind of the person. Why did they do this? What kind of human being could do something so barbaric? That is where this essay comes in.

It is not my intention to explain the reasons why we are fascinated with murder, but rather to give a portrait of one such murderer, in fact one such serial killer. Ivan Milat. Between 1989-1992 Milat abducted, robbed, sexually molested, tortured and murdered seven young people and concealed their bodies in the Belangalo State Forest. There is good reason to believe that Milat may have been the perpetrator of other murders, however this has never been proven and Milat is not saying a word. Currently he sits in a maximum-security prison in New South Wales under constant surveillance where he still protests his innocence, despite appeals being turned down.

This essay intends to look at Milat the man as well as his crimes in order to provide a accurate portrait of a serial killer.