CRIME GUNS: Veteran policeman Bernie Jackson, Melbourne experienced policeman Rob Wilson and crime journalist John Silvester at Blue Ribbon Foundation ‘Sly of the Underworld’ crime night. Picture: PAUL CARRACHERTALES of murders, ambushes, stolen cars and cups of peppermint tea were the highlight of a Blue Ribbon Foundation Sly of the Underworld crime night in Horsham on Wednesday.

About 150 people packed Wesley Performing Arts Centre to hear Underbelly author and crime reporting legend John Silvester tell criminal tales of a humorous nature.

The event also included experienced police officers Rod Wilson, investigator of the Frankston triple murders in the 1990s, and Bernie Jackson, who helped clean up corruption and restore law and order in the Solomon Islands.

Silvester kept the crowd laughing at every twist as he spoke of the Melbourne gangland war during the 2000s between ruthless drug lord Carl Williams and the notorious but now almost extinct Moran dynasty.

The crowd loved a particular tale about what was meant to be a cup of coffee, but ended up a glass of Johnny Walker Blue Label with Mick Gatto, after the colourful Melbourne identity was cleared of murdering hitman Andrew Veniamin.

Silvester’s main message was drug dealers were intrinsically stupid who lived like they were in a gangster film.

“The movie always ends with these people locked up or dead,” the crime writer said.

Rod Wilson spoke of trying to catch Paul Denyer, the serial killer behind the triple murders.

He described the common habits and psyche of a serial killer and how police could quickly narrow down suspects using forensic evidence.

At the end of the evening the speakers took questions from the audience.

They included what prompted people to become serial

killers, whether crime was increasing and merits of the war on drugs.

Mr Silvester said police should be respected by the public for the tremendous stress they were under to lock up people such as Paul Denyer. All proceeds from the event went to Wimmera Base Hospital.

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