The West

Dodd search house at risk

The owner of a Badgingarra home "destroyed" during an extensive search for missing teenager Hayley Dodd risks having the property seized by the bank after defaulting on his mortgage.

Kahu Smiler has not stayed a night at the North West Road farmhouse, about 1km from where 17-year-old Hayley was last seen hitchhiking in July 1999, since police tore it apart in November.

Mr Smiler, who bought the property four months after Hayley vanished, has been renting elsewhere and was negotiating compensation with WA Police after big sections of the home's concrete flooring were removed and walls cut through.

The Commonwealth Bank has started legal proceedings against him, claiming he failed to make a $2929 mortgage payment due in February. According to a writ filed in the Supreme Court this week, Mr Smiler owes just over $81,000 on the property.

Mr Smiler did not want to comment yesterday on the bank's legal action but has previously said he was put in a difficult position through no fault of his own. It has previously been estimated the damage bill could exceed $200,000 and it is understood the home has been deemed uninhabitable.

He has claimed that he is still waiting to finalise compensation but WA Police say an agreement has been reached.

The West Australian

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