Aussies Find Remains of Outlaw Ned Kelly

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 1, 2011 4:30 AM CDT
A giant statue of Australian outlaw Ned Kelly at Glenrowan, the location of his final stand.   (Getty Images)
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(Newser) – The remains of Ned Kelly have been identified more than 130 years after the iconic Aussie outlaw was executed. The bushranger, hanged in 1880 for his gang's murder of three policemen, was buried with dozens of other convicts in a prison mass grave. DNA from a Kelly descendant was used to identify the remains, and to prove that a skull that had long been on display at the Old Melbourne Gaol wasn't Kelly's, the Sydney Morning Herald reports.

Kelly, the son of an Irishman transported to Australia for stealing two pigs, became a controversial folk hero in the late 1870s as the leader of a gang of bank robbers. He was captured after a shootout with police during which he famously walked out to confront them in a home-made suit of armor. "The wear and tear on the skeleton is a little bit more than would be expected for a 25-year-old today," says the leader of the team of forensic scientists that identified the remains. "But such was Ned's life, this is hardly surprising."

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