Today’s Birthday 27/12 | Daily Mail Online

Today’s Birthday, December 27: Australian serial killer Ivan Milat (1944 – ).

Arguably the most notorious serial killer in Australian history, Ivan Milat had his seventh application for a review into his cold-blooded murder convictions quashed earlier this year.

Convicted of the infamous 1990s NSW backpacker murders, the 73-year-old has been serving consecutive life sentences in Goulburn Correctional Centre’s SuperMax wing for the past two decades.

In October, NSW Supreme Court justice Megan Latham dismissed his latest bid for a review, noting points raised had already been considered in previous applications.

Born in Sydney in 1944, Milat grew up in Bossley Park on the city’s outskirts, one of 14 children belonging to a large immigrant Yugoslavian family.

Given the sheer size of the family, his hard-working and strict parents found it difficult to contain Milat and his mischievous brothers.

Dating back to age 17, Milat started flirting with the law as police filed charges in relation to home invasions, car thefts and armed robberies.

The former road worker was acquitted of the rape of two female hitchhikers in 1971, who testified that he had pulled a knife before the alleged assault.

Between 1989 and 1992, several backpackers went missing outside Sydney, leading to a widescale scouring of bushland in the Belanglo State Forest.

The search recovered the bodies of seven dead male and female travellers, of Australian, British and German backgrounds.

The killer used a wide variety of methods including beating, strangulation, shooting, stabbing, decapitation and sexual assault, the autopsies confirmed.

Investigators believed the deaths were connected due to similarities at some of the crime scenes but it took British backpacker Paul Onions – forced to run from Milat after being picked up while hitchhiking in 1990 – to link his moustachioed attacker to the area in 1994.

This allowed police to finally raid Milat’s property and after 15 weeks of trial, he was found guilty in July 1996 and handed seven life sentences plus an extra six years for the Onions attack.

Milat’s celebrity has grown further behind bars with consistent appeals, prison antics (foiled escape plan, ingesting razor blades and amputating a finger), speculation he carried out more killings and the popular television series Wolf Creek and Catching Milat.

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