The story of Australia’s first known kidnapping of a child for ransom.
When eight-year-old Graeme Thorne was kidnapped on his way to school in July 1960, Australia was gripped with fear and loathing. What monster would dare take financial advantage of the most treasured bond of love – between parent and child? Just weeks earlier, Graeme’s parents had won a fortune in the Opera House Lottery, and this had attracted the attention of the perpetrator, Stephen Bradley.
Bradley was a most unlikely kidnapper, however his greed for the windfall saw him cast aside any sympathy for his victim or his victim’s family, and drove him to take brazen risks with the life of his young captive.
Kidnapped tells the astounding true story of how this crime was planned and committed, and describes the extraordinary police investigation that was launched to track the criminal down. Mark Tedeschi explores the mind of the intriguing and seriously flawed Stephen Bradley, and also the points of view of the victim, his family – and the police, whose work pioneered the use of many techniques that are now considered commonplace, marking the beginning of modern-day forensic science in Australia.
Using his powerful research and storytelling skills, Mark Tedeschi reveals one of Australia’s greatest true crime dramas, and what can only be described as the trial of the 20th Century.
‘A broad-brush morality tale about the consuming power of greed’ Sydney Morning Herald
‘A detailed and compelling account of events, unfolded with Tedeschi’s customary forensic skill and interspersed with interpretation and analysis that informs and provokes.’ Nicholas Cowdery AM QC
‘An utterly compelling account of the kidnap and murder of schoolboy Graeme Thorne from an author with unparalleled knowledge of the investigation and prosecution of crimes which have terrified Australians.’ Margaret Cunneen SC, Deputy Senior Crown Prosecutor
This is the true crime account of Eugenia Falleni, a woman who in 1920 was charged with the murder of her wife. Eugenia had lived in Australia for twenty-two years as a man and during that time officially married twice. She lived a full married life with her first wife, Annie, for four years before Annie realised that her husband was a woman. Even after Annie knew, they lived together for eight months before they went on a bush picnic, when Annie mysteriously died. Her body was not identified for almost three years, and during this time Eugenia married again, this time to Lizzie. When Eugenia was finally arrested and charged with Annie's murder, the police attempted to tell Lizzie that her husband was a woman. She laughed at them – she was so convinced that her husband was a man that she thought she was pregnant to him.
This is the story of one of the most extraordinary criminal trials in legal history anywhere in the world. The book traces Eugenia's history: from her early years in an Italian immigrant family in New Zealand, to her brutal treatment when she first tried living as a man. The story then follows the twenty-two years that she lived in Sydney as Harry Crawford – exploring how Harry managed to convince two wives that he was a man. The trial of Eugenia Falleni for Annie's murder is extensively analysed in a clear and easily understood way by the author, Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi QC, one of Australia's foremost criminal law barristers.
‘Outstanding new true-crime … A grimly fascinating and extraordinary tale.’ The Age
‘In the hands of NSW Senior Crown Prosecutor Mark Tedeschi, Eugenia’s story is gripping.’ Australian Women’s Weekly
‘Tedeschi writes with a deep compassion ... and makes us all consider how fear, prejudice and ignorance can affect lives, even today.’ Herald Sun
‘Crown prosecutor and barrister Mark Tedeschi QC has drawn on a wealth of legal knowledge and insight.’ Courier-Mail
One of the most shocking murder trials in Australia's legal history, and the tribulations of the prosecutor who conducted it.
In 1838, eleven convicts and former convicts were put on trial for the brutal murder of 28 Aboriginal men, women and children at Myall Creek in northern New South Wales. The trial created an enormous amount of controversy because it was almost unknown for Europeans to be charged with the murder of Aborigines. It would become the most serious trial of mass murder in Australia’s history.
The trial’s prosecutor was the Attorney General of New South Wales, John Hubert Plunkett. It proved to be Plunkett’s greatest test, as it pitted his forensic brilliance and his belief in equality before the law against the combined forces of the free settlers, the squatters, the military, the emancipists, the newspapers, and even the convict population.
From the bestselling author of Kidnapped and Eugenia, Massacre at Myall Creek follows the journey of the man who who arguably achieved more for modern-day civil rights in Australia than anyone else before or since.
‘The Myall Creek massacre is a stain on our nation’s soul, with the only positive note being that the law brought the evil perpetrators to justice in a key trial that was a foundation stone for the integrity of our legal system. This wonderful book brings that trial, and the marvellous prosecutor, John Hubert Plunkett, back to life.’ Peter FitzSimons
‘A much needed and appreciated historical insight into the profession of a man who gained respect through the colonial era of Australia and his fight for justice through the law for my people, the Kamilaroi.’ Aunty Noeline Briggs-Smith OAM, Aboriginal researcher
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