News State Western Australia News Charges laid in Perth’s Claremont serial killings
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Charges laid in Perth’s Claremont serial killings

Claremont women
Jane Rimmer, Sarah Spiers and Ciara Glennon were last seen on the streets of Claremont. Photo: ABC
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In a stunning breakthrough, Western Australian Police have charged a man in connection with the historic Claremont serial-killer murders in Perth in the mid-1990s.

WA commissioner of Police Karl O’Callaghan on Friday said the crime squad had charged Bradley Robert Edwards, 48, of Kewdale, with the murders of Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon, and for attacks on two other young women.

Mr Edwards appeared in Perth Magistrates Court on Friday and also faces charges of abducting a 17-year-old girl in February 1995 as she walked through Rowe Park in Claremont, and indecently assaulting an 18-year-old woman during a break-in at a Huntingdale home in February 1988.

He was remanded in custody to appear in Stirling Gardens Magistrates Court on January 11.

Commissioner O’Callaghan said Mr Edwards was arrested at his Kewdale home on Thursday and was charged early on Friday on two counts of wilful murder, one count of deprivation of liberty and two counts of aggravated sexual penetration.

Police will allege Mr Edwards abducted 23-year-old Jane Rimmer in the early hours of June 9, 1996, after she’d been out with friends in Claremont. Her body was discovered in Wellard on August 3.

They will also allege he abducted 27-year-old Ciara Glennon on March 14, 1997 after she had also been out in Claremont. Ms Glennon’s body was discovered in bushland in Eglin on April 3.

Mr Edwards has also been charged with the abduction of a 17-year-old girl two years earlier, in 1995, as she walked through a park in Claremont and was allegedly forced into a vehicle, driven to a cemetery and sexually assaulted.

He also faces a charge alleging he entered the bedroom of an 18-year-old woman in 1998 and allegedly attacked her as she slept.

Man charged for Claremont murders
WA Police commissioner Karl O’Callaghan said it was the largest and most complex investigation in WA history Photo: AAP.

Commissioner O’Callaghan said the investigation into the disappearance and suspected murder of Sarah Spiers on January 27, 1996, was ongoing.

EARLIER

Neighbours told the ABC officers from the Tactical Response Group went to the Kewdale house around 7am and a man aged in his 50s was taken into custody.

They said they heard yelling coming from the property around the same time.

Claremont Kewdale house
Forensic police are examining the Kewdale house from where officers removed a number of large plastic bags. Photo: ABC (Robert Koenig-Luck)

Later a younger woman, believed to be the man’s daughter aged in her 20s, was also taken away by police, neighbours said.

A police media spokesman confirmed officers were at the property “in relation to an ongoing investigation”, but declined to comment further.

It is understood the arrested man had not been previously linked to the case.

The deaths of three women over 14 months between 1996 and 1997 were dubbed the Claremont serial killings and sparked Australia’s longest-running and most expensive police investigation.

Sarah Spiers, Jane Rimmer and Ciara Glennon disappeared from the upmarket Perth suburb between January 1996 and March 1997.

Ms Rimmer’s body was found in August 1996 in bushland at Wellard south of Perth, while Ms Glennon’s remains were found in April 1997.

Ms Spiers’ body has never been found.

The suspect’s neighbour Jim Sheffield said he heard a “commotion” from the man’s Kewdale house this morning.

“I was out the back … doing some gardening, that was about half past 6 and I heard a real loud yell and it sounded like a scream,” Mr Sheffield said.

“I didn’t think all that much about it. Came out about an hour later, there was a lot of police cars across the road and they were dressed in you know like heavy armour and that.

“Obviously I just thought ‘well something’s going on’ because you don’t normally see those sort of police officers around.”

Police, including forensic officers, spent the day at the property and were seen removing a number of large plastic bags.

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