News, links, analysis and comments on Melbourne's Underworld

Saturday, April 24, 2004

When killers are victims too- John Silvester.

Thanks to the fact that you can speculate about the dead without fear or recrimination (through the courts anyway), John Silvester has started to name who killed who. Unfortunately he can only name those who are dead who in turn had killed others... you get what I mean.

When killers are victims too - SpecialsGanglandKillings -

Monday, April 05, 2004

Adam Shand from The Bulletin digs deep.

Though not breaking new ground, Adam Shand from The Bulletin did manage to get interviews with both "Benji" Veniamin and Carl Williams recently. It makes for some interesting reading:
It has come to light that police believe Veniamin had once been a loyal associate of the man charged with his murder, Dominic "Mick" Gatto. Investigators believe that Veniamin, a suspect in at least five of the slayings, had operated as a paid assassin for both sides, picking up $100,000 for each successful hit.

Well there's a cosy 800 grand in the bank (maybe more..)

There's also this quote about Beji's car:
When this reporter met Veniamin recently, it was hard to believe that here was Melbourne's most prolific contract killer. He was a small, lively man, with soft brown eyes that darted away if you got too close. His hands seemed too soft and delicate to be those of a killer. But for the tattoos, he was like any ethnic kid you might see in a hot Torana on a Saturday night. The silver Mercedes-Benz he was driving when he died wasn't his. It was a loaner from an associate too scared to ask for it back, police sources said.

Here at MU we doubt this a bit. If Benji was getting 100 large for knocking folk, then hecould afford it. He was also close to some lucrative speed makers and there was cash a flowin'.

It also outlines Benji's past with Gatto and friends, the falling out over Mokbel's bashing and the resulting war...

The Bulletin > Features > Stories > Burial ground :

Saturday, April 03, 2004

Unusual times call for unusual measures... John Silvester reports.

Knee jerk

Some have called for a royal commission, others for drastic police powers and the nostalgic for a return to the old days when detectives, not gangsters, were said to run Melbourne.

The calls smack of frustration more than common sense. The only people to benefit from a royal commission would be the lawyers, who would be paid a fortune, and sunglass manufacturers, who would provide the latest mafia inspired eye-wear for colourful witnesses. Royal commissions provide headlines and non-admissible testimony.

Those who want to return to the good old days need a reality check. Police have never had a good record in solving underworld murders. When witnesses won't talk, potential victims won't take protection and killers won't stop, then police have a problem.
And there, my dear friends, is the problem. If crims wanna knock other crims, if targets don't want protection, if victims and friends won't talk, then there is sweet FA the police can do.

Sure increased DNA powers might be useful, but I would be VERY wary of giving the police too much power. The cops have shown time and time again (the drug squad esp) that they cannot be trusted when it comes to infiltrating criminal gangs. It just becomes too tempting to join then sometimes:
CORMAN: "Well, you see Willard... In this war, things get confused out there, power, ideals, the old morality, and practical military necessity. Out there with these natives it must be a temptation to be god. Because there's a conflict in every human heart between the rational and the irrational, between good and evil. The good does not always triumph. Sometimes the dark side overcomes what Lincoln called the better angels of our nature. Every man has got a breaking point. You and I have.

So while Steve Bracks has been very keen to try to stop this war- here's the simple fact: unless we become a totalitarian regime, it will continue until it naturally runs out of players or somehow a peace is brokered by the players.

Unusual times call for unusual measures - SpecialsGanglandKillings -