Chopper turns his attention to the vicious Melbourne underworld war that began in the late 1990s and would kill more than 30 gangsters before the police finally took back control of the streets. Chopper’s experience and insider information make him the best person to tell the shocking story.
Police investigators established that a gang of new-boy crooks run by a chubby suburban drug dealer called Carl Williams were out to exterminate established crime figures. Williams wanted to be king of the manor in Melbourne and found himself in the middle of a hurricane of mayhem and murder.
The deaths caused a power vacuum within Melbourne’s criminal community as various factions fought for control and influence. The majority of the murders remain unsolved, although police believe that Williams was responsible for up to 10 of them.
On February 28, 2007, Williams pleaded guilty to three counts of murder. In return for being released from prison by the time he is 70, police will not charge Williams with the other murders they believe he committed. So Carl Williams got 35 years in jail. But years before police set up a taskforce to tackle the murder wave, poacher-turned-gamekeeper Chopper warned that the war was about to explode. And he predicted who would die. He was right.
Mark Brandon Read remains one of Australia’s most controversial public figures. An ex-convict, author and celebrity, he was also a recording and performance artist. He died after a long battle with liver cancer in 2013.