Police in Western Australia have charged an alleged killer of two women with the slaying of a third victim–Sarah Spiers.
Bradley Robert Edwards, 49, already faces murder charges in the deaths of Ciara Glennon and Jane Rimmer, ABC news reported, in what have been dubbed the Claremont serial killings.
Western Australian Police commissioner Chris Dawson remarked that the new charges being brought against Edwards were a “significant development,” but declined to provide details on the case.
The decades-long investigation has been the largest and most expensive in Australian history, ABC reported, citing former WA Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan, who spoke to reporters in December 2016.
“This has already been the biggest and most complex police investigation in WA history,” he said. “Hundreds of police officers have worked on this case over the [past] 20 years.”
“Operation Macro has been a massive body of work involving thousands and thousands of investigative actions.”
And now, investigative efforts within the cold case homicide squad have led to additional murder charges being brought against Edwards.
Police investigating #Claremont serial killings charge Bradley Robert Edwards with murder of Sarah Spiers after her disappearance more than two decades ago https://t.co/TVRbvUMp9b pic.twitter.com/MVavIIpRAh
— ABC Perth (@abcperth) February 22, 2018
“This development follows extensive inquiries by the Macro investigation team within the cold case homicide squad,” Dawson said, according to ABC.
“This is a very traumatic time for the Spiers family, so I urge the media to please respect their privacy and do not attempt to contact them,” he said.
“Sarah Spiers’s family has expressly told the WA Police Force that they do not wish to make any comment about today’s development.”
Spiers was 18 when she went missing after a night out on Jan. 27, 1996, and her body was never found. She called a taxi to take her home from a nightclub, but when the cab arrived she was nowhere to be found.
All three victims disappeared between January 1996 and March 1997.
Massive development in the #claremontserialkiller case as police charge Bradley Robert Edwards with murder of #SarahSpiers #Perth#Claremont #wapol
— Marnie O'Neill (@marnieoneill7) February 22, 2018
Rimmer went missing from the same nightclub in June 1996 and her body was found in some bushland near Perth two months later.
Glennon vanished from Claremont in March 1997 and her body was found in a northern suburb of Perth a month later.
Last month, police called on the public to assist in identifying a white Toyota Camry thought to be linked to the disappearance of Spiers.
A white 1992 Toyota Camry station wagon linked to the Sarah Spiers case is yet to be found, police say — they've again appealed for help to locate it after charging Bradley Robert Edwards with her murder https://t.co/bOPhS6fZ1X #Claremont pic.twitter.com/ypXUiosYtx
— Scott Holdaway (@holdaways) February 22, 2018
Edwards has been charged with a total of eight offenses in relation to attacks on other women, over and above the three charges of murder in the Claremont serial killings.
According to ABC, these include deprivation of liberty, breaking and entering, and sexual assault.
In a media release published by the police, it is stated that Edwards is due to appear in court on Feb. 28 to face both new and previous charges.
Police have charged Bradley Robert Edwards with the murder of Perth teenager Sarah Spiers, who disappeared from Claremont in 1996. Her body has never been found. He is back in court next week @westaustralian #perthnews pic.twitter.com/Mw38tdFnhI
— Clarkie1972 (@Clarkie1972) February 22, 2018
The accused has been remanded in custody since his arrest.