John Christianos Victoria Police
Police have identified the body found in a wheelie bin to be of John Christianos'. Christianos was 40-years-old when he went missing on 11 June, 2001. Victoria Police

A body found inside a wheelie bin at an Oakleigh South business in Melbourne has been identified as of a graphic artist who had been missing for more than 17 years. John Christianos, 40, was last seen on June 11, 2001.

On July 13, workers discovered human remains inside a bin while they were cleaning out a storage unit on Milgate Street, Oakleigh South. Missing Persons Squad detectives have now identified the remains to be of Christianos’.

Since the South Australian-born graphic artist went missing more than 17 years ago, a public appeal for information was conducted. He was also recorded on AFP’s National Missing Persons website. According to the records, he was last seen at his home at a facility on Warrigal Road, near Paloma Street, in Bentleigh East. He lived alone as he had become estranged from his family, whom he didn’t have contact with for some time before his disappearance. He was reported missing by other residents at the facility.

Christianos, who had police record that included drug use and assaults, was employed as a graphic artist at the time of his disappearance. He was known to be a caricature artist.

In 2011 following an inquest, the Coroner made the finding that Christianos had likely died on or after June 11, 2001. Because there was no body, the cause, location and circumstances of his death were not determined.

His disappearance had previously been regarded as suspicious. His death continues to be treated as suspicious.

“Even though it has been over 17 years since he was last seen, we believe that it is likely there are still people out there who know what happened to John,” Detective Inspector Andrew Stamper said, appealing for anyone to come forward with information about the case. “As we always say, circumstances and relationships change and this might feel like the right time for those people to come forward with information.

“Clearly something significant has happened after John left his home for his body to be dumped in a bin and locked up for so many years. It’s our job now to try and find out what that was and I’d urge anyone with any piece of information at all to come forward.”

Anyone with information is asked to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or submit a confidential report at