True Crime

//True Crime
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  • Chapters include: Gangs And Gangsters: Al Capone, Frank Costello, Jo Adonis, the Messinas, the Krays and the Mafia; City Cases: Whitaker Wright, Lord Kylsant, Clarence Hatry, Horatio Bottomley, The Lynskey Tribunal, Ferdinand Lesseps, the Teapot Dome; Political Murders: Spencer Percival, the attempt on Lloyd George, John F. Kennedy, William McKinley, James A. Garfield, Abraham Lincoln, Rasputin, Mussoline and Mateotti; Kidnapping: Elizabeth Canning, the Lindbergh baby, James Cross, Pierre Laporte, Samuel Bronfman, Muriel McKay; Pleas Of Insanity: Lieutenant Holt, Colonel  Rutherford, Ronald True, Dale Nelson, Leopold and Loeb, Harry Thaw; Sex Crimes: Alfred Whiteway, Edward Paisnel, Peter Griffiths, Patrick Byrne, Albert DeSalvo, Fritz Haarmann, Gaston Domincini; Cases Unsolved: Jack the Ripper, Mrs Caroline Luard.
  • London, 1910 - the city is rocked by its first encounter with foreign gangsters. In December, a group of Russian anarchists were surprised while burgling a jeweller's shop in Houndsditch. They shot and  killed three policemen and wounded two others. Within two weeks, most of the gang had been captured. Then the police were informed that the last two members of the gang were hiding at 100 Sidney Street. The police called in the military, local residents were evacuated and the firefight raged for six hours, culminating in the burning of the house and the discovery of the two agitators' bodies  i  the ruins. On New Year's Day, Leon Beron, a middle-aged Russian Jew, was found battered to death on Clapham Common. Knife cuts on his cheeks, inflicted after death, formed the shape of a rough 'S' - rumour said it was the revenge murder of an informer, 'S'  being the initial letter for 'spy' in both Russian and Polish. Steinie Morrison, who had been seen in his company the night before, was arrested and charged with Beron's murder, and sentenced to hang.  This was later commuted to life in prison. Morrison protested the change of sentence and for the next ten years, demanded that the original sentence be carried out, proclaiming his innocence and staging hunger strikes.  He never changed his story, not even by the smallest detail, and died ten years later in prison. Was an innocent man convicted? And did the murder of Beron have any connection to the Siege of Sidney Street?  With black and white photographs.
  • A social history with a difference - it boldly goes where social history has never gone before. Rescued from the forgotten pages of early newspapers are the true stories of adventurers such as Owen Suffolk, the poetic highwayman; Sam Poo, the Chinese bushranger; the disgrace and trial in the 1890s of the Speaker of the House; the flight of the Premier when his financial juggling failed to save his own bank; grim  goldfields murders, piracy in Melbourne Harbour and poisonings in distant London Town. With black and white photographs and illustrations.
  • Detective Inspector Napoleon Bonaparte has never been better than in this baffling case of a killer who seems to be picking off the town widows one by one. Bony arrives in Broome just after two widows were brutally strangled. The local police are stymied by a murderer who carefully leaves no clues. Then another widow is killed. But this time the murderer has been just a little bit careless.
  • Before Carl Williams, there was Trimbole: race fixer, drug boss, Mafia powerbroker, murder contractor and arms dealer. In the 1970s he and the Calabrian Mafia ruled Australia's marijuana trade from their Castles in Griffith - dream homes built on drug money. The business expanded to heroin when Trimbole joined Terry Clark and the notorious Mr Asia syndicate, and then to murder when anti-drugs campaigner Donald Mackay blew the whistle. Here is never-before published material gathered by Walkley Award-winning journalist Keith Moor, covering  the truth behind Mackay's disappearance, interviews with supergrass Gianfranco Tizzoni as well as a top cop. There are excerpts from an unpublished memoir by Mackay's widow and a dossier on the involvement of controversial federal minister Al Grassby. Illustrated with black and white photos.

  • On February 1, 1922, the distinguished film director William Desmond Taylor was found shot dead in his Los Angeles bungalow.  When the police arrived, the found the head of Paramount Studios burning a bundle of papers in the fireplace,  a well-known actress searching the house for letters she claimed were hers  and almost immediately after, a hysterical 20 yea-old actress known for 'little girl' roles.  Despite a full-scale investigation and lurid headlines, the case was never solved and remains a lingering Hollywood scandal. In 1967, more than forty years after Taylor's death, director King Vidor (Northwest Passage, The Fountainhead, Duel in the Sun, War and Peace) determined to solve the mystery which had haunted him throughout his career. Through his intimate knowledge of both the studios and the stars, he succeeded, where dozens of professional detectives had failed, in discovering the identity of the murderer. But his findings were too explosive. He decided he could never go public and locked his evidence away. After Vidor's death in 1982, Kirkpatrick, Vidor's authorised biographer, gained access to the evidence and reconstructed the amazing story of Taylor's murder and Vidor's investigation. The cast of suspects include the comedic actress Mabel Normand, a reputed drug addict; the beautiful ingénue, Mary Miles Minter, with whom Taylor was having an affair; Mary's domineering mother, Charlotte Shelby - also rumoured to have been Taylor's lover; Taylor's homosexual houseman; and Taylor's secretary, who bore an uncanny resemblance to Taylor's mysteriously elusive brother. This true crime story has every element of the classic murder mystery. Covered up for more than half a century, the full story can now be told in all its riveting, shocking detail. A must for any Hollywood fan.
  • The story of Melbourne's Pentridge Gaol from 1850 - 1900. Where Pentridge stands is dark and bloody ground, the battlefield of an undeclared war.  On one side, the Law, wielding savage authority. On the other, the prisoners whose only weapons were cunning, intrigue and sudden desperate violence.  Here is a fascinating account of escapes, mortal combats, vicious tyrants, zero-hour reprieves and all the dramatic and pathetic details of life behind the grim stone walls, yet still, there is a sense of defiant resilience of the human spirit.
  • One night, Juliet Mykyta, aged sixteen, did not come home.  Two years later her murdered body was found in a paddock near Truro, South Australia. She was one of seven young women, who died in what became known as the Truro murders. The author, Juliet's mother, lived through what many of us fear - the endless waiting, the dread, the eventual fact  of her daughter's death and the terrifying isolation of pain. Anne-Marie's struggle to survive will help the families and friends of all victims of violent crime. It will impress n young people - like nothing else could - the dangers to which they are often oblivious.  A devastating book by a brave and wise woman.
  • Mass killers, spree killers, repeat offenders - the world now knows them as serial killers. The author covers, in unwavering detail, thirty three true stories of serial killers, dating back to our earliest days: Alexander Pearce, The Cannibal Convict; John Lynch, the Berrima Axe Murderer; Martha Rendell, the Murderous Mistress; Edward Joseph Leonski, the Brownout Strangler; John Wayne Glover, the Granny Killer; The 'Bodies in the Barrels' Snowtown Killings, the Backpacker Murders and many more. Illustrated  with black and white photographs.