If this post brings about a sense of deja vu it’s likely because you’ve read it all before.
Ten weeks ago back in May I ran this book review with the promise that later in the year Channel 7 would show a two-part mini-series documenting the same sordid tale in all it’s disquieting and twisted glory. That time has now arrived.
This Sunday night the first half of BLUE MURDER: KILLER COP goes to air, starring Richard Roxburgh as the real life former NSW corrupt police detective Roger Rogerson who is now an inmate of the Kevin Waller Unit of Sydney’s Long Bay jail.
This mini-series, which also stars Toni Collette and former South Sydney footballer turned actor Matt Nable, is actually a sequel of sorts to the two-part miniseries BLUE MURDER produced by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation which went to air in 1995. Twenty-two years ago that series also featured Richard Roxburgh playing Rogerson. When you see the physical resemblance between the two you’ll understand why the producers stuck with the same actor and knew they were onto an authentic ratings winner.
Reprinted below is the originally posted book review, which I composed after reading the book earlier in the year.
How does a person go from a once highly decorated NSW police detective to luring, (at the age of 73) a 20-year-old to a Sydney storage unit, murdering him and then dumping the body at sea the next day in waters off Cronulla?
This is the question that author and former police detective himself Duncan McNab sets out to answer in what is his second book on this country’s most infamous and crooked former cop. The answer is delivered across 30 chapters in this book but may be summarised in just one word – ‘incrementally’.
In Australia’s long, inglorious history of bent coppers – going right back to the country’s very first constable James Smith, dismissed by Governor Arthur Phillip for larceny – there has been none more tarnished and synonymous with crime then Roger ‘The Dodger’ Rogerson.
In a notorious career, which included associations with some of Australia’s worst criminals (he famously ventured on speaking tours with professional stand-over man and alleged author Chopper Read), extrajudicial killings, being implicated in various murders and disappearances; countless allegations of threatening behaviour, bribery and drug dealing; and convictions for perverting the course of justice and perjury, he was dismissed from the police force in 1986 and jailed twice.
He is now 76 years of age and began serving a ‘life’ sentence in Sydney’s Long Bay jail in September of last year for the 2014 pre-meditated murder of twenty year old Jamie Gao, that took place inside Rent-A-Space storage shed 803 housed within a deserted industrial estate in the Sydney south-western suburb of Padstow.
A recent newspaper report has it that Rogerson, who plays the piano, has formed a singing trio with two other inmates and regularly belts out old Frank Sinatra tunes (think “My Way“) in the jail wing for the elderly and infirm.