Grace Millane, pictured, was strangled in Auckland on the weekend of her 22nd birthday
A vile video mocking the murder of British backpacker Grace Millane has sparked outrage in New Zealand after it was widely shared online.
Police in Auckland are investigating the Instagram posts which brand the 21-year-old ‘disgusting’ and a ‘horrible human being’ – just weeks after 27-year-old Jesse Kempson was found guilty of her murder.
Ms Millane was choked to death by Kempson during sex the night before her birthday before being stuffed into a suitcase and buried in the Waitakere Ranges, outside of the city.
The video, which has now been deleted, provoked fury in New Zealand, a country still reeling from the appalling murder of the young tourist.
Det Insp Scott Beard, of Auckland City Police, said: ‘The comments made in the video are offensive and would be extremely upsetting to Grace’s friends and family and to the wider community.’
The killer, whose name is still protected by a court order in New Zealand, was found guilty on November 22 of strangling Ms Millane from Wickford, Essex.
He strangled her and stuffed her body in a suitcase, before burying her in a forest outside Auckland. She was assumed missing, before her body was found by a police a week later.
Kempson (left), was found guilty of the murder of the British backpacker (right) in New Zealand
The convicted killer was described by a relative as a ‘pathological liar’ who would have ‘enjoyed the power’ during her murder.
The serial fantasist made up a series of lies to feed his obsession of having violent sex with young women, it also emerged.
David Millane and Grace’s mother, Gillian Millane, wept after the verdict was delivered, as did several jurors.
Mr Millane said: ‘Grace was our sunshine and she will be missed forever.’
Police officers said during the trial that phone data showed the killer had used Google to browse websites for large duffel bags, suitcases and car hire after Ms Millane died.
The defendant’s phone was also used to search for ‘flesh-eating birds’ and ‘are there vultures in New Zealand?’.
Records showed the defendant had searched online for ‘the hottest fire’, ‘large bags near me’ and ‘Waitakere Ranges’. He will be sentenced on February 21, 2020.
He faces life in prison with a minimum of 10 years without parole, though the judge can increase the latter period.
CCTV shown to the court saw Miss Millane greeted her killer with a hug, standing beside a Christmas tree in the courtyard of the SkyCity casino.
They toured several bars, drinking cocktails and, as she told one of her best friends in a text message, she was clearly impressed.
‘I click with him so well,’ she wrote to her friend Ameena Ashcroft. ‘I will let you know what happens tomorrow.’
By the morning, however, Grace was lying dead in the £190-a-week third-floor apartment at the CityLife hotel in central where the killer, a local man, lived.
5.45pm, December 1 2018: CCTV footage shown to jurors the defendant (whose face is obscured) walked into view and open his arms for a hug with Grace Millane as they met for the first time on December 1 in Auckland, New Zealand
6pm: The CCTV footage followed the couple through their date, including their first stop: A casino containing Andy’s Burger Bar
At 7.12pm, the footage aired in court shows the couple left the burger bar and walked through the casino atrium and down the escalator walking out onto the street and past the Christmas tree
8.30pm: the pair (seen stood at right-hand end of the bar) were paying after spending an hour at the Mexican Cafe
8.45pm: Three hours after their first meeting Miss Millane and the defendant are shown kissing repeatedly in Auckland’s Bluestone Bar, where her killer was drinking before the date
9.40pm: Just over an hour later Grace Millane and the defendant leave the lift at the hotel where he lived and head for room 308. The footage is the last time she was seen alive
Grace Millane’s family will get NO compensation for her death because she was outside the EU when she was killed – prompting calls for scheme to be reviewed
Grace Millane’s family will not receive any compensation for her murder under a government scheme that is now being reviewed.
The backpacker was killed in New Zealand but only families of British people murdered within the UK and European Union are currently compensated.
According to the Sunday Express, the case of Miss Millane prompted former Labour Jim Cunningham to ask what the Ministry of Justice was doing to ensure families whose loved ones are murdered abroad have access to criminal injuries compensation.
Justice minister Wendy Morton said a review of the UK system was taking place.
‘A review of the Criminal Injuries Compensation Scheme is under way, looking at its scope, and eligibility rules and requirements,’ the minister said.
‘The recommendations of the Victims’ Commissioner in her report on the entitlements and experiences of bereaved families following homicide abroad will be considered carefully as part of this review.’
At present the only cases in which bereaved families could gain compensation for loved ones killed outside the EU involved victims of terrorism. Their families can apply through the Victims of Overseas Terrorism Compensation Scheme.
Over the weekend, Kempson’s step-brother apologised to Miss Millane’s family.
He told TVNZ: ‘Sorry for their loss. To know it’s one of our family members, even though it’s not our actions, it’s very difficult, and I can’t imagine the pain and hurt and what they’ve had to go through, through court, hearing all the stuff and the actions that he took.
‘It’s just so ridiculous [that Kempson put the family through the ordeal of a trial]. To me that’s all because he doesn’t have any shred of a decent human being inside of him and couldn’t just confess that he murdered her.
‘I think it was power. To me, it was a split moment, he enjoyed the power and kept going.’
She had been strangled during sex and the killer had taken a series of intimate photographs of her naked body before watching hardcore pornography through the early hours.
The man began December 2, Grace’s 22nd birthday, by buying a suitcase to transport her body to a shallow grave in remote bushland.
But even before he did so, he was arranging another Tinder date for that afternoon, in which he told a woman a bogus story about a supposed friend who had killed a woman during sex.
He was first snared by a message he left on Grace’s Facebook profile page the night before, as he waited to leave the Bluestone Room bar around the corner.
Contacted by police, he wove an elaborate web of lies, at first claiming he and Grace had parted as friends, planning to meet the next day.
Trapped by CCTV showing him buying the suitcase, however, he changed his story, claiming Grace had told him she had learned BDSM sex games with a former boyfriend and had asked him to choke her during intercourse.
He said they had each taken photographs of each other’s private parts on their cellphones and that after sex he had fallen asleep, drunk, under the shower without suspecting Grace was in danger.
His lies were exposed by data recovered from his mobile phone which showed he had searched for ‘Waitakere Ranges’, the hills where he later buried Grace, and ‘hottest fire’, minutes before taking the photos of her.
That, the verdict confirmed, was proof that, as Crown prosecutor Brian Dickey had told the jury, he had ‘eroticised her death.’
‘It’s not safe sex play that killed Grace Millane, it’s strangulation,’ said Mr Dickey. ‘At some point of which she lost consciousness and would have become limp and lifeless and he had to carry on.
‘And if that’s not reckless murder someone will have to explain to me what is.’
After the trial Grace’s father David Millane thanked the police and prosecutors, who he said had ‘never flinched away from the more intimate details of the case’ and were ‘compassionate and thoughtful’ to the family.
He continued: ‘Last but not least we would like to thank the people of New Zealand.
‘They have opened their hearts to Grace and our family. I cannot express our gratitude enough for all the offers of gifts and kindness that we have received over the last year.
‘Finally, we must return home to try and pick up the pieces of our lives day-to-day without our beloved Grace. Thank you.’
Pictures of the bedroom where Grace was strangled to death during sex were shown to the jury
A photo issued Auckland City Police showing the use of luminol to highlight the blood stains on the floor of the killer’s apartment
Speaking outside court, his voice breaking with emotion, David Millane broke down as he remembered his ‘beautiful, loving, talented daughter’
Her death shocked many in New Zealand, which prides itself on welcoming tourists and where many people travel abroad as well.
Hundreds of people attended candlelight vigils after she died, and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern spoke about New Zealanders feeling ‘hurt and shame’ that she was killed in their country.
Tourism is also one of New Zealand’s largest industries, accounting for more than 20 per cent of foreign exchange earnings and about six per cent of the overall economy.