Leadbelly: The True Story of Australia's Gangland Wars by John Silvester and Andrew Rule - Download PRC Ebook
Leadbelly: Inside Australia's Underworld Wars - A Book Review
If you are interested in true crime stories, especially those that involve gangsters, hitmen, and police, you might want to check out Leadbelly: Inside Australia's Underworld Wars by John Silvester and Andrew Rule. This book is a comprehensive account of the bloody and brutal conflicts that rocked Melbourne's underworld for more than a decade, claiming dozens of lives and shocking the public. In this article, I will review this book and tell you what it is about, who wrote it, why it is relevant, what it covers, what are its strengths and weaknesses, and how it compares with other books on the same topic. I will also give you my personal opinion on whether you should read it or not.
Leadbelly : inside Australia's underworld wars by John Silvester; Andrew Rule Download ebook PRC
What is Leadbelly about?
Leadbelly is a non-fiction book that chronicles the history of Australia's most notorious gangland wars that took place in Melbourne from the late 1990s to the early 2010s. The book covers the rise and fall of various criminal factions that fought for power, money, and revenge in a deadly game of cat and mouse with each other and with the law enforcement. The book also explores the personalities, motives, and methods of the key players involved in these wars, such as Carl Williams, Jason Moran, Mick Gatto, Tony Mokbel, Graham Kinniburgh, Lewis Moran, Alphonse Gangitano, Mario Condello, Benji Veniamin, Andrew Veniamin, Paul Dale, Steve Owen, Simon Overland, Christine Nixon, and many others. The book also reveals how these wars affected the lives of innocent bystanders, witnesses, families, journalists, lawyers, judges, and politicians.
Who are the authors?
The authors of Leadbelly are John Silvester and Andrew Rule, two veteran journalists who have been covering crime and justice issues for decades. They are also the creators of the popular Underbelly series of books and TV shows that dramatize some of the events depicted in Leadbelly. Silvester and Rule have won multiple awards for their investigative reporting and have access to exclusive sources and information that make their work authoritative and credible.
Why is this book relevant?
This book is relevant for several reasons. First of all, it provides a detailed and accurate account of one of the most violent and fascinating chapters in Australian history that has captivated millions of people around the world. Second of all, it sheds light on the complex and often corrupt relationships between criminals, police, media, and politicians that shape our society. Third of all, it offers insights into the psychology and sociology of crime and violence that can help us understand human nature better. Fourth of all, it serves as a cautionary tale of how greed, ambition, ego, betrayal, revenge, and fear can lead to tragic consequences for everyone involved.
Summary of the book
The origins of the gangland wars
The book begins by tracing the origins of the gangland wars to the 1970s and 1980s, when Melbourne's underworld was dominated by the so-called Painters and Dockers, a group of unionized waterfront workers who were involved in various illegal activities, such as theft, extortion, drug trafficking, and murder. The book also introduces some of the early figures who would later play important roles in the wars, such as Lewis Moran, Graham Kinniburgh, Alphonse Gangitano, and Jason Moran. The book also explains how the introduction of new drugs, such as ecstasy and amphetamines, in the 1990s created new opportunities and challenges for the criminals, who had to compete with each other for the lucrative market.
The rise and fall of the Carlton Crew
The book then focuses on the rise and fall of the Carlton Crew, a powerful and influential faction that emerged in the 1990s and was led by Lewis Moran and Graham Kinniburgh. The Carlton Crew was composed of several seasoned and respected gangsters, such as Mick Gatto, Mario Condello, Alphonse Gangitano, and Benji Veniamin. The Carlton Crew controlled most of the drug trade in Melbourne and had connections with other criminal groups, such as the Calabrian Mafia and the Hells Angels. The book also describes how the Carlton Crew faced challenges from rival factions, such as the Williams Family, led by Carl Williams, a young and ambitious drug dealer who wanted to take over the market. The book also details how the Carlton Crew was involved in several violent incidents that sparked the gangland wars, such as the murders of Alphonse Gangitano in 1998, Greg Workman in 1999, Mark Moran in 2000, Richard Mladenich in 2000, Jason Moran in 2003, Graham Kinniburgh in 2003, Lewis Moran in 2004, and Mario Condello in 2006.
The role of the police and the media
The book also examines the role of the police and the media in the gangland wars. The book reveals how the police were often outsmarted, outgunned, and outmaneuvered by the criminals, who had better resources, intelligence, and contacts. The book also exposes how some police officers were corrupt or incompetent and how they colluded with or leaked information to some criminals or journalists. The book also shows how the media played a crucial role in shaping public opinion and influencing the course of events. The book highlights how some journalists were brave and ethical and how they exposed the truth and held the authorities accountable. The book also criticizes how some journalists were sensationalist and irresponsible and how they exploited or endangered people's lives for ratings and profits.
The aftermath and the legacy
The book concludes by describing the aftermath and the legacy of the gangland wars. The book reports how most of the main protagonists of the wars were either killed or imprisoned by 2010. The book also explains how some of them tried to appeal their convictions or sentences or to cooperate with the authorities to reduce their penalties. The book also discusses how some of them became celebrities or authors or tried to reinvent themselves or their image. The book also evaluates how the gangland wars affected Melbourne's underworld and society at large. The book suggests that while some aspects of crime have changed or declined since then, others have remained or increased. The book also argues that while some lessons have been learned or reforms have been implemented since then, others have been ignored or resisted.
Analysis of the book
The strengths of the book
The weaknesses of the book
One of the main weaknesses of Leadbelly is its lack of structure and coherence. The book is organized in a chronological order, but it often jumps back and forth in time and place, making it confusing and hard to follow. The book also lacks a clear thesis or argument, and it sometimes repeats or contradicts itself. The book also suffers from poor editing and proofreading, as it contains many typos, grammatical errors, and factual mistakes.
The comparison with other books on the same topic
Leadbelly is not the only book that covers the topic of Australia's gangland wars. There are several other books that have been written by different authors with different perspectives and approaches. Some of these books are: Underbelly: The Gangland War by John Silvester and Andrew Rule, Killing Time: Confessions of a Gangland Hitman by Graham Kinniburgh and Tom Noble, The Sting: How I Got Carl Williams and Brought Down the Underworld by Paul Dale and Vikki Petraitis, The Good Cop: The True Story of Ron Iddles by Justine Ford, The Matriarch: The Kathy Pettingill Story by Adrian Tame, and The Gangland Murders: The Shocking Truth Behind Australia's Underworld Killings by James Morton and Susanna Lobez. These books offer different angles and insights into the gangland wars, such as the personal experiences of a hitman, a corrupt cop, a good cop, a crime matriarch, and a crime historian. These books also vary in their quality and credibility, depending on their sources and methods.
The main takeaways from the book
The main takeaways from Leadbelly are that the gangland wars were a complex and tragic phenomenon that involved many factors and actors. The book shows that the gangland wars were not just about drugs and money, but also about power and pride, loyalty and betrayal, justice and injustice, life and death. The book also shows that the gangland wars had profound and lasting impacts on Melbourne's underworld and society, as well as on the individuals and families who were directly or indirectly affected by them.
The recommendation for potential readers
I would recommend Leadbelly to potential readers who are interested in true crime stories, especially those that deal with gangsters, hitmen, and police. I would also recommend this book to potential readers who want to learn more about Australia's history and culture, especially those that relate to crime and justice issues. However, I would also warn potential readers that this book is not for the faint-hearted or the easily offended, as it contains graphic descriptions of violence and profanity. I would also advise potential readers to be critical and skeptical when reading this book, as it may contain some biases or inaccuracies.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: How many people died in the gangland wars?
A: According to Leadbelly, at least 36 people were killed in the gangland wars between 1998 and 2010. However, some sources may have different numbers or definitions of who counts as a victim or a perpetrator.
Q: How did Carl Williams die?
A: Carl Williams was killed in prison in 2010 by another inmate named Matthew Johnson, who hit him with a metal pipe. Johnson claimed that he acted in self-defense after Williams threatened him. However, some conspiracy theories suggest that Johnson was hired or influenced by someone else to kill Williams.
Q: What happened to the Carlton Crew?
A: The Carlton Crew was effectively wiped out by 2006, as most of its members were either killed or imprisoned by their rivals or by the police. Some of the surviving members tried to rebuild their empire or to retire from crime.
Q: What is Underbelly?
A: Underbelly is a series of books and TV shows created by John Silvester and Andrew Rule that dramatize some of the events and characters depicted in Leadbelly. Underbelly has been very popular and controversial, as it has been praised for its entertainment value and criticized for its accuracy and ethics.
Q: Where can I buy or download Leadbelly?
A: You can buy or download Leadbelly from various online platforms, such as Amazon, Google Books, or AbeBooks. You can also find it in some physical bookstores or libraries.