Everything we know about the mummified body that was found inside a Sydney home.

It was supposed to be a routine clean-up.

Following the death of hoarder Bruce Roberts in July of last year, forensic cleaners had been called in to clear out the man’s cluttered property in preparation for the sale of his estate.

But what started out as just another job turned into a grisly discovery for cleaners working in the home last Tuesday in Sydney’s Greenwich.

As they went about their business on the property, forensic cleaners uncovered a mummified corpse.

The corpse was found in one of the home’s three bedrooms, and the discovery was so unfathomable and shocking, the cleaner who found it initially assumed it was an old cow hide wrapped inside a rug.

“The cleaner is still very shaken up about it all,” the executor of the property told the Daily Mail.

“He was sitting next to the rug and thought it was a cow’s hide wrapped inside, because of how dried out it was.”

Police Car
Forensic cleaners uncovered a mummified body while clearing out a deceased estate in Sydney. Image: Getty

The subsequent discovery has opened up a full police investigation, including a methodical dig of the yard, with authorities believing the body had been there for possibly over 10 years.

Police have since identified the mummified corpse as being that of Shane Snellman, who had links to petty crime.

It's believed Mr Snellman was aged in his 30's when he passed, and police are treating his death as "unnatural" and "suspicious", as reported by The Sydney Morning Herald.

On Friday, Chatswood acting Superintendent Simon Jones told the media Mr Snellman had sustained "a number of injuries" prior to his death.

Mr Snellman was apparently estranged from his family at the time of his passing, and no missing persons' report had been filed, reported The Daily Telegraph.

It's not known what involvement Mr Roberts may have played in Mr Snellman's death, if any, with authorities now investigating the connection between the two.

Police are also looking into whether Mr Roberts knew the remains were in his home and why they hadn't been discovered sooner.

The property had been vacant since Mr Roberts' death from natural causes last year.

Mr Roberts had inherited the home from his mother, and was found dead in one of the front rooms of the house, after an employee at the local IGA notified authorities.


The worker had apparently become concerned after noticing Mr Roberts hadn't come into the store, which he would do on a daily basis, and decided to check on him at his house, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

As police carry out their investigation of the property, Supt Jones told The Daily Telegraph the sheer volume of material left behind on the property has been challenging and "not very pleasant for investigators".

Cleaners have described the property as being a "complete fire hazard", because of the amount of rubbish on it, according to The Daily Mail.

"We have done some shocking cleans, but this was one of the worst," they added.

"The house is so full of stuff that you can't open some of the bedroom doors."

Police are calling the case "a mystery", and are still trying to piece together how Mr Snellman's remains became mummified, according to The Sydney Morning Herald.

"There are a lot of factors that come into the investigation, like time, temperature and so on," a senior police officer told the newspaper.

Meanwhile, neighbours have described Mr Roberts as reclusive and a little bit strange.

"He was [in his] late 50's or 60's, had the same brown jacket on. He was childlike in a way. He just had no expressions, nothing," a neighbour told the ABC, as reported by The Sydney Morning Herald.

Another neighbour described the whole situation as "creepy and sad".