A FAMILY who found dead bodies in cases they won in a Storage Wars-style auction has admitted they don’t know how many there are.
The grim discovery was made when they began sifting through the contents of an abandoned storage unit they bought at an auction last week.
Buyers are not allowed to examine the contents before bidding on a unit.
Cops arrived at their house at lunchtime on Thursday after being called in by the shaken buyers as neighbours reported a hideous smell coming from the house.
Officers have launched a murder probe and are now said to be hunting for a serial killer.
A close family member has admitted they’ve no idea how many bodies are in the case, the New Zealand Herald reports.
The man – who is an immediate family member – said his relatives were “doing alright” but had fled their home after become the focus of attention.
Police had said the find is “incredibly upsetting” for the family and their investigation is on-going.
“As we have said previously, the occupants of the address are not involved in the incident,” said Detective Inspector Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua.
“Our priority remains on confirming the identification of the deceased and results of further examinations and tests are still pending.
“However, the very nature of this discovery means this is a complex investigation – and it will take time.”
Witnesses reported seeing three hearses outside the house on Thursday night as cops cordoned off the property and removed the remains.
A neighbour said there was a noticeable stench coming from the house – and suspected the bodies had been “diced up”.
They said: “Whatever happened… [they] must have been diced up, the way they carried the bodies in to the hearse.
“It was just a small distance handing the remains into the hearse.
“I could smell it here. I thought it was a dead cat or something.
“They brought it back on a trailer. How did they not pick up the smell?
“I knew that because I’m a pig hunter and when carcass go bad it’s the same smell. That’s why I thought it was a dead animal.”
Another neighbour, Shelton Honana, told Newshub: “I feel sorry for the family because they’ve got nothing to do with it.
“Whoever did do it… front up. It’s a bit unfair, bro. It’s horrific, f***ing scary.”
A relative of the family said they were “doing all right” after the grim discovery and said they have left the property for a while.
Asked how many bodies were found in the suitcase, the man said his family members didn’t know.
“I can’t answer that. I wouldn’t have a clue anyway. No, I don’t think they know either. I don’t think so,” he said.
Police have not confirmed how many bodies were discovered in the “unowned property”.
The boss of the storage unit company, Safe Store Ltd, confirmed the business is cooperating with the cops in the grisly investigation.
“We won’t say anything because it is under police investigation, and we are cooperating with police,” the director said.
Detective Inspector Tofilau Faamanuia Vaaelua said the “occupants of the address are not believed to be involved in the incident”.
A cordon was put up around the house over the weekend as forensic workers scoured the scene.
A post-mortem examination is now being carried out on the remains.
Companies often auction off abandoned units to get back some of the unpaid rent – a practice which even inspired TV show Storage Wars in the US.
The series set in California has run for more than a decade starting in 2010 – with the latest series in 2021.
Storage units are auctioned off when rent hasn’t been paid for three months.
Buyers can view the contents for just five minutes – but they are not allowed to enter the storage unit or open any boxes.