Auction site eBay pulls publicity-seeking Snowtown bank listing on grounds of poor taste

The Snowtown bank listing has been pulled by eBay from its online auction on grounds that its breaches eBay’s community content standards.

Some 47 eBay bids from 17 bidders had been made in the initial 16 hours of the online auction of Snowtown’s infamous bank building.

The bidding opened with a $US25 offer added to the $US1000 starting price.

The bidding stood at $35,100 when eBay took down the listing.

The barrel storage of murder victims was not mentioned on the auction site. Listing agent Nigel Christie says he believed he was adhering to eBay policy on murder memorabilia.

Christie is seeking to have the eBay listing reinstated.

But the originating Hale Real Estate website does say: “Ever wanted a piece of grisly SA history?”

It adds: “Buyers should note that illegal activities were conducted in the old bank building, and you should enquire to the nature of these activities prior to bidding.”

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The disused bank at Snowtown, about 140 kilometres north of Adelaide, became infamous after police discovered eight mutilated bodies in barrels inside the vault of the bank in 1999.

The bank sold the premises for $43,000 in 1995. It first sold after the gruesome discovery in 2000 at $34,560.

It sold again at $130,000 in 2005.

It last traded at $142,000 in 2006.

The online auction reserve price had been hidden from participants.

The property originally built as the bank manager’s residence consists of four good-sized bedrooms and the old bank building.

“It has since been used as rental for commercial purpose and more recently as a band room/games room and setting for the movie Snowtown,” bidders were advised.

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“This property is for definite sale so buyers should bid with confidence,” the eBay marketing said.

The auction of 30 Railway East Terrace was scheduled to conclude on March 20.

The bidder with the highest offer was expected to enter into a Real Estate Institute of South Australia contract within seven days of the closing of bids, according to the listing rules.

Hale Real Estate director Nigel Christie has said the Snowtown property had $200,000 expectations.

“The bank and home would make an ideal investment giving two separate rental opportunities: the four-bedroom home and the ex-bank (subject to consents).”

The listing is also being advertised on realestate.com.au.

This article first appeared on Property Observer.

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