National

Claremont serial killer trial verdicts due

By AAP Newswire

Accused Claremont serial killer Bradley Robert Edwards is set to learn his fate with a judge to deliver his long-awaited verdicts next week.

Edwards, 51, denies murdering secretary Sarah Spiers, 18, childcare worker Jane Rimmer, 23, and solicitor Ciara Glennon, 27, after they each spent a night out with friends in the affluent suburb's pubs in 1996 and 1997.

The confessed rapist and former Telstra technician faced a seven-month trial in the Supreme Court of Western Australia which concluded in late-June.

Justice Stephen Hall will hand down his verdicts next Thursday, having spent almost three months considering the evidence which included testimony from more than 200 witnesses as well as DNA and fibre analysis.

Edwards was charged with the murder of Ms Rimmer and Ms Glennon after a raid on his Kewdale home in December 2016.

He has been remanded in prison since then and was charged with Ms Spiers' murder in February 2018.

The bodies of Ms Rimmer and Ms Glennon were discovered in bushland weeks after they were killed, but Ms Spiers' body has never been found.

Presiding over the trial without a jury due to the huge publicity and graphic exhibits, Justice Hall heard evidence from Edwards' two ex-wives, his love rival, former friends, ex-colleagues and people who had run-ins with a stranger lurking in Claremont offering lifts.

Edwards was aged 19 when he committed his first known offence against women, breaking into the home of an 18-year-old he distantly knew from their Huntingdale neighbourhood and indecently assaulting her as she slept in 1988.

It provided the crucial piece of evidence detectives needed to arrest him almost 29 years later for the murders of Ms Rimmer and Ms Glennon.

He'd left behind a semen-stained silk kimono stolen from a washing line in Huntingdale and when it was finally tested in November 2016, DNA matched swabs taken from a teenager he abducted from Claremont then raped at nearby Karrakatta Cemetery in 1995.

It also matched cellular material found under Ms Glennon's fingernails.

Investigators looked more deeply into other offences in Huntingdale and discovered fingerprints taken from an attempted break-in in 1988 which matched Edwards' prints in the national database.

He was on file for attacking a Hollywood Hospital social worker from behind, covering her mouth and dragging her towards toilets while he was working for Telstra in 1990.

Edwards didn't admit the Huntingdale and Karrakatta crimes until the month before his trial began.

The defence case lasted mere minutes, with Edwards electing not to take the stand and his barrister calling no witnesses.

But Paul Yovich spent the trial and closing remarks suggesting the DNA evidence had been contaminated in the laboratory by samples taken from Edwards' rape victim, although prosecutors said they never came near each other.

Much of it related to fibres prosecutors allege came from Edwards' work car and clothes that were found on Ms Glennon, Ms Rimmer and the rape victim.