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  BIRNIE David *1951   AUSTRALIA       5
  BIRNIE Catherine *1951 ... Freemantle
aka 1986 1986  
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20051129: Pauper's funeral for serial killer Perth Serial Killer News
NOTORIOUS serial killer David Birnie has been given a secret pauper's cremation in Perth, at taxpayers' expense.

Birnie was found hanging in his prison cell in October and no one claimed his body.

At the time of his death he had been serving a life sentence in Perth's Casuarina prison for the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The Department of Community Development organised an indigent's funeral for Birnie after his body lay unclaimed in the state mortuary for more than a month.

The service, which regulations say must be "basic but dignified", was carried out at Pinnaroo cemetery north of Perth on November 21, a government spokesman said.

Birnie and his partner, Catherine, achieved infamy after they embarked on a five-week killing spree in October and November 1986.

They either lured their victims to their house in suburban Willagee, or abducted them, before raping them and stabbing, strangling and clubbing them to death.

The spree ended when a fifth rape victim managed to escape and alert police.

Catherine Birnie is serving her life sentence at Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's northeast.

When first jailed, the pair wrote to each other every day.

But in recent years, Catherine, now 52, refused to reply to her former lover's letters.

She was said to have been upset by his death.

But authorities said any application to attend his funeral would be turned down due to an incident in which she once spat on one of her victim's graves.

 

20051012: Serial killer's body yet to be claimed Perth Serial Killer News

The body of one of Australia's most notorious serial killers, who was found hanged in his prison cell, is yet to be claimed for burial.

David Birnie, 55, was found dead in his cell in the protection wing of Western Australia's maximum security Casuarina prison, south of Perth, last Friday.

His apparent suicide came almost 19 years into the life sentence he was serving after admitting the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The offences were committed in partnership with his former de facto wife Catherine Birnie, 52, who is serving life in Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's north-east.

At the time of Birnie's death, police confirmed his next of kin was listed as Catherine Birnie but justice authorities later indicated she had cut off all contact with her former lover in recent years.

A spokeswoman for the State Coroner's office on Wednesday said no claim had been made on Birnie's body, even though it was cleared for release.

"I can confirm that he is cleared for release but no one has claimed him," the spokeswoman said.

She said if nobody claimed the body, then the Coroner's Office would speak to the senior next of kin and if that person was unable to claim the body, their office would liaise with the Public Trustee regarding a funeral.

The coronial investigation into Birnie's death continues and an inquest will be held, as is required for all deaths in custody.

Justice Minister John D'Orazio this week made a personal plea for Catherine Birnie to come forward with information about any other crimes the pair may have committed.

Meanwhile, the WA Department of Justice was forced to deny rumours that Birnie had kept in his call a pet cat, which was also found dead.

Acting executive director of prisons Ian Johnson told Southern Cross radio the claim was "absolutely false".

 

20051007: Serial killer found hanged in cell Queensland Serial Killer News
One of Australia's most notorious serial killers, David Birnie, has been found dead in his cell in a maximum security prison.

Birnie, 55, was serving a life sentence in Casuarina prison, south of Perth in WA, for the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The offences were committed in partnership with his de facto wife Catherine Birnie, 52, who is serving a life sentence in Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's north-east.

Police this morning confirmed the prisoner's identity as David John Birnie.

Birnie's body was found hanging in a cell about 4.30am (WST) today.

The prison squad and forensic police are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the death.

The Birnies embarked on a five-week killing spree in October and November 1986, luring the women to their house in suburban Willagee or abducting them, before raping them and stabbing, strangling and clubbing them to death.

The spree ended when a fifth rape victim managed to escape and alert police.

Catherine Birnie left her husband and their six children in 1985 to live with David Birnie. She never married Birnie, but took his surname.

The pair were due to be eligible for parole in 2007.

"Police can confirm that sentenced prisoner David John Birnie, 55 years, was found deceased in his cell at Casuarina Prison at approximately 4.30am (WST), this morning," police said in a statement.

"The police investigation into his death will be coordinated by the Police Prison Unit, on behalf of the coroner.

"At this point in time, the circumstances do not appear to be suspicious."

 

 

20050330: Commissioner demands to see serial killer records Queensland Serial Killer News

Western Australia's Department of Justice has been ordered to produce records dealing with any allegation of sexual assault by serial killer David Birnie.

The order was made today as part of the department's appeal against a $70,000 compensation payout to a former jail inmate who claims he was sexually assaulted by Birnie and another prisoner at Casuarina prison in 1999.

The man's lawyers wanted access to the records because they say they have statements from witnesses claiming that Birnie has been involved in sexual activity while in prison, despite his denials.

District Court commissioner Tony Power ruled it was appropriate that the records be produced.

The former inmate's lawyer, John Hammond, says it is an important decision.

"We've certainly got other material to suggest that there's been a lot of bad behaviour at Casuarina and people have been targeted and that the prison authorities know about [it]," he said.

Earlier today, the commissioner ruled that Birnie would give evidence to the court via video-link from the prison where he is being held, as the security risks and the cost of supervising him to appear in person was inappropriate.

 

20050225: Lawyers seek court appearance for serial killer Queensland Serial Killer News

Lawyers are trying to force convicted serial killer and rapist David Birnie to appear in court in person to testify as a witness for the Department of Justice.

A former inmate at Casuarina prison was awarded $72,000 in compensation after claiming he was raped by Birnie while on remand at the prison.

The Justice Department is appealing against the pay out and wants Birnie to appear as a witness to support its case.

The Department says in an affidavit from Birnie, he claims he has been celibate for 18 years.

Lawyers representing the inmate who claims he was raped, say they have a number of prison guards and inmates who will testify that is untrue.

Mark Trowell QC says the alleged perpetrators, including Birnie should face court in person.

"We think they should be treated like every other witness and they should be brought to court so the judge can see them first hand and make an assessment of their credit, prisoners get brought to court all the time," he said.

 

20051129: Pauper's funeral for serial killer Perth Serial Killer News
NOTORIOUS serial killer David Birnie has been given a secret pauper's cremation in Perth, at taxpayers' expense.

Birnie was found hanging in his prison cell in October and no one claimed his body.

At the time of his death he had been serving a life sentence in Perth's Casuarina prison for the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The Department of Community Development organised an indigent's funeral for Birnie after his body lay unclaimed in the state mortuary for more than a month.

The service, which regulations say must be "basic but dignified", was carried out at Pinnaroo cemetery north of Perth on November 21, a government spokesman said.

Birnie and his partner, Catherine, achieved infamy after they embarked on a five-week killing spree in October and November 1986.

They either lured their victims to their house in suburban Willagee, or abducted them, before raping them and stabbing, strangling and clubbing them to death.

The spree ended when a fifth rape victim managed to escape and alert police.

Catherine Birnie is serving her life sentence at Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's northeast.

When first jailed, the pair wrote to each other every day.

But in recent years, Catherine, now 52, refused to reply to her former lover's letters.

She was said to have been upset by his death.

But authorities said any application to attend his funeral would be turned down due to an incident in which she once spat on one of her victim's graves.

 

20051012: Serial killer's body yet to be claimed Perth Serial Killer News

The body of one of Australia's most notorious serial killers, who was found hanged in his prison cell, is yet to be claimed for burial.

David Birnie, 55, was found dead in his cell in the protection wing of Western Australia's maximum security Casuarina prison, south of Perth, last Friday.

His apparent suicide came almost 19 years into the life sentence he was serving after admitting the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The offences were committed in partnership with his former de facto wife Catherine Birnie, 52, who is serving life in Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's north-east.

At the time of Birnie's death, police confirmed his next of kin was listed as Catherine Birnie but justice authorities later indicated she had cut off all contact with her former lover in recent years.

A spokeswoman for the State Coroner's office on Wednesday said no claim had been made on Birnie's body, even though it was cleared for release.

"I can confirm that he is cleared for release but no one has claimed him," the spokeswoman said.

She said if nobody claimed the body, then the Coroner's Office would speak to the senior next of kin and if that person was unable to claim the body, their office would liaise with the Public Trustee regarding a funeral.

The coronial investigation into Birnie's death continues and an inquest will be held, as is required for all deaths in custody.

Justice Minister John D'Orazio this week made a personal plea for Catherine Birnie to come forward with information about any other crimes the pair may have committed.

Meanwhile, the WA Department of Justice was forced to deny rumours that Birnie had kept in his call a pet cat, which was also found dead.

Acting executive director of prisons Ian Johnson told Southern Cross radio the claim was "absolutely false".

 

20051007: Serial killer found hanged in cell Queensland Serial Killer News
One of Australia's most notorious serial killers, David Birnie, has been found dead in his cell in a maximum security prison.

Birnie, 55, was serving a life sentence in Casuarina prison, south of Perth in WA, for the abduction, rape, torture and murder of four women in 1986.

The offences were committed in partnership with his de facto wife Catherine Birnie, 52, who is serving a life sentence in Bandyup women's prison, in Perth's north-east.

Police this morning confirmed the prisoner's identity as David John Birnie.

Birnie's body was found hanging in a cell about 4.30am (WST) today.

The prison squad and forensic police are still investigating the circumstances surrounding the death.

The Birnies embarked on a five-week killing spree in October and November 1986, luring the women to their house in suburban Willagee or abducting them, before raping them and stabbing, strangling and clubbing them to death.

The spree ended when a fifth rape victim managed to escape and alert police.

Catherine Birnie left her husband and their six children in 1985 to live with David Birnie. She never married Birnie, but took his surname.

The pair were due to be eligible for parole in 2007.

"Police can confirm that sentenced prisoner David John Birnie, 55 years, was found deceased in his cell at Casuarina Prison at approximately 4.30am (WST), this morning," police said in a statement.

"The police investigation into his death will be coordinated by the Police Prison Unit, on behalf of the coroner.

"At this point in time, the circumstances do not appear to be suspicious."

 

 

20050330: Commissioner demands to see serial killer records Queensland Serial Killer News

Western Australia's Department of Justice has been ordered to produce records dealing with any allegation of sexual assault by serial killer David Birnie.

The order was made today as part of the department's appeal against a $70,000 compensation payout to a former jail inmate who claims he was sexually assaulted by Birnie and another prisoner at Casuarina prison in 1999.

The man's lawyers wanted access to the records because they say they have statements from witnesses claiming that Birnie has been involved in sexual activity while in prison, despite his denials.

District Court commissioner Tony Power ruled it was appropriate that the records be produced.

The former inmate's lawyer, John Hammond, says it is an important decision.

"We've certainly got other material to suggest that there's been a lot of bad behaviour at Casuarina and people have been targeted and that the prison authorities know about [it]," he said.

Earlier today, the commissioner ruled that Birnie would give evidence to the court via video-link from the prison where he is being held, as the security risks and the cost of supervising him to appear in person was inappropriate.

 

20050225: Lawyers seek court appearance for serial killer Queensland Serial Killer News

Lawyers are trying to force convicted serial killer and rapist David Birnie to appear in court in person to testify as a witness for the Department of Justice.

A former inmate at Casuarina prison was awarded $72,000 in compensation after claiming he was raped by Birnie while on remand at the prison.

The Justice Department is appealing against the pay out and wants Birnie to appear as a witness to support its case.

The Department says in an affidavit from Birnie, he claims he has been celibate for 18 years.

Lawyers representing the inmate who claims he was raped, say they have a number of prison guards and inmates who will testify that is untrue.

Mark Trowell QC says the alleged perpetrators, including Birnie should face court in person.

"We think they should be treated like every other witness and they should be brought to court so the judge can see them first hand and make an assessment of their credit, prisoners get brought to court all the time," he said.

 


Copyright 1995-2005 by Elisabeth Wetsch
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