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Code of Silence: How one honest police officer took on Australia's most corrupt police force

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'Wherever there is power and money, there is always the risk of corruption. But everyone has a choice: to become involved or to take a stand against it.' Colin Dillon is an extraordinary man. He was the first Indigenous policeman in Australia. But that is actually a very small part of his story. He was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fi 'Wherever there is power and money, there is always the risk of corruption. But everyone has a choice: to become involved or to take a stand against it.' Colin Dillon is an extraordinary man. He was the first Indigenous policeman in Australia. But that is actually a very small part of his story. He was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry in 1987 and give first-hand evidence of police corruption. He did this at a time when the Fitzgerald Inquiry was beginning and struggling for traction. His evidence at the Inquiry was instrumental in eventually sending some police, including Police Commissioner Terry Lewis, and politicians to prison. Revealing, powerful and uncompromising, this is the story of Colin Dillon's nearly 40 years in a police force rotten to the core. It describes the extraordinary range of criminal activities - drugs, gaming, SP bookmaking, brothels, vehicle theft - that were allowed to operate with impunity in return for bribes. It also tells of the high price an honest man and his family paid for his decision to break the code of silence.


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'Wherever there is power and money, there is always the risk of corruption. But everyone has a choice: to become involved or to take a stand against it.' Colin Dillon is an extraordinary man. He was the first Indigenous policeman in Australia. But that is actually a very small part of his story. He was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fi 'Wherever there is power and money, there is always the risk of corruption. But everyone has a choice: to become involved or to take a stand against it.' Colin Dillon is an extraordinary man. He was the first Indigenous policeman in Australia. But that is actually a very small part of his story. He was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry in 1987 and give first-hand evidence of police corruption. He did this at a time when the Fitzgerald Inquiry was beginning and struggling for traction. His evidence at the Inquiry was instrumental in eventually sending some police, including Police Commissioner Terry Lewis, and politicians to prison. Revealing, powerful and uncompromising, this is the story of Colin Dillon's nearly 40 years in a police force rotten to the core. It describes the extraordinary range of criminal activities - drugs, gaming, SP bookmaking, brothels, vehicle theft - that were allowed to operate with impunity in return for bribes. It also tells of the high price an honest man and his family paid for his decision to break the code of silence.

30 review for Code of Silence: How one honest police officer took on Australia's most corrupt police force

  1. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    Shortlisted for the 2017 Ned Kelly Awards, this is the story of a very impressive man. Read this and you won't help but be reminded of the line 'The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing'. Col Dillon is one of the good men. You have to agree with the blurb: he's an extraordinary man. The first Indigenous policeman in Australia, he was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry to give first-hand evid Shortlisted for the 2017 Ned Kelly Awards, this is the story of a very impressive man. Read this and you won't help but be reminded of the line 'The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing'. Col Dillon is one of the good men. You have to agree with the blurb: he's an extraordinary man. The first Indigenous policeman in Australia, he was also the first serving police officer to voluntarily appear before the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry to give first-hand evidence of police corruption. He did that despite knowing full well the fallout that would come his way. He did it because it was the right thing to do. This is one of those books that just needs to be read. Not just because it open up about the stunning array of criminal activities that are indulged in from within the police force, but because it shows the price honest people and their families pay in these circumstances. Which is just about the most stunning part of this book, that and the fact that we constantly need reminders that the triumph of evil is just there under the surface all the time.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Graham Wilson

    While not the best written book I have ever read the story is totally gripping - we owe this man a huge debt of gratitude for what he did and his courage is there for all to see. It gives pause for thought as to how easily our safe and stable communities can slide into something sinister if people don't act when they see bad things happening. And his role model a a leading indigenous police officer and then as an activist for his people is also very important. But first and foremost this man com While not the best written book I have ever read the story is totally gripping - we owe this man a huge debt of gratitude for what he did and his courage is there for all to see. It gives pause for thought as to how easily our safe and stable communities can slide into something sinister if people don't act when they see bad things happening. And his role model a a leading indigenous police officer and then as an activist for his people is also very important. But first and foremost this man comes across as a thoroughly decent person. This book is well worth supporting for its importance in documenting Australian political history but also deserves to be read for the fascinating story it tells of a public inquiry that changed the course of politics in Australia

  3. 4 out of 5

    Walter Van praag

    Yes, a five star rating. This not because it is a literary masterpiece but because it is a very readable, enjoyable and very understandable compulsive read which will educate the reader about the extend of corruption in the Queensland policeforce at least up till the 1980s but probably still happening nationwide to some extend - depending on who you believe.... To read a book about the 1987 Fitzgerald Commission of Enquiry you would presume to require an interest and prerequisite knowledge, but n Yes, a five star rating. This not because it is a literary masterpiece but because it is a very readable, enjoyable and very understandable compulsive read which will educate the reader about the extend of corruption in the Queensland policeforce at least up till the 1980s but probably still happening nationwide to some extend - depending on who you believe.... To read a book about the 1987 Fitzgerald Commission of Enquiry you would presume to require an interest and prerequisite knowledge, but not so with our author the indigenous Inspector Colin Dillon; the first and probably the most important witness to come forward. No small feat knowing the extend of the corruption going on. Colin has proven himself to be an extraordinary officer with impecable and unshakeable ethic, enormous professionalim and a great writer to beat. Certainly worth picking up if you see it anywhere. And do the world a favour and pass the book around in the hope we educate each other to prevent this level of corruption back in our police force!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Ian Bates

    Col Dillon was an honest cop within a very corrupt Police Force. His decision to give evidence at the Fitzgerald Inquiry Into Police Corruption took real courage and sacrifice. Undaunted, he continued to fight for what was right for the remainder of his long career. As a former Police Officer I salute him. What he did helped make Queensland a safer place to live. It isn't perfect yet but Col's example has encouraged more whistle blowers to come forward and gradually the low-life cops on the take Col Dillon was an honest cop within a very corrupt Police Force. His decision to give evidence at the Fitzgerald Inquiry Into Police Corruption took real courage and sacrifice. Undaunted, he continued to fight for what was right for the remainder of his long career. As a former Police Officer I salute him. What he did helped make Queensland a safer place to live. It isn't perfect yet but Col's example has encouraged more whistle blowers to come forward and gradually the low-life cops on the take are being weeded out. This is a well written and honest book. Col Dillon is an example for good to the whole community, not just the indigenous community he has honourably represented in many ways.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Rita Chapman

    Col Dillon was an honest cop working in Queensland during the police corruption years. It makes interesting reading, particularly for those who lived in Australia during this time. Well-written and easy to read, it was reassuring to hear the facts straight from the horse's mouth about his determined efforts against corruption and racism. Whilst many references are made about Col's indigenous background, the main story is about an individual who had the strength and courage to not only maintain h Col Dillon was an honest cop working in Queensland during the police corruption years. It makes interesting reading, particularly for those who lived in Australia during this time. Well-written and easy to read, it was reassuring to hear the facts straight from the horse's mouth about his determined efforts against corruption and racism. Whilst many references are made about Col's indigenous background, the main story is about an individual who had the strength and courage to not only maintain his integrity against very difficult odds but also to have the moral fortitude to speak out at the Fitzgerald Inquiry.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Pauline

    Congratulations Colin Dillon on your book. It took great courage to speak out of the corruption you witnessed whilst doing your duty, it is most distressing to see how the system was continually routed by the senior officials in charge of seeing that the law was upheld. As is the case in these instances, it is the honest ones that speak out to rectify the situation, are the ones to suffer, whilst all involved in the abuse rush to cover their butts.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Vannessa

    Great read, a fast paced story about indigenous police officer Colin Dillon and his working life in the Queensland Police Force. His experiences of police corruption about which he testified to the Fitzgerald Royal Commission and his stalled career are told in the book. No Cinderella story here, it's just honest about how hard whistle-blowing can be and how the consequences can stay with you for the rest of your life. But Dillon also shows that it's better to stand up proud, than to cower in fea Great read, a fast paced story about indigenous police officer Colin Dillon and his working life in the Queensland Police Force. His experiences of police corruption about which he testified to the Fitzgerald Royal Commission and his stalled career are told in the book. No Cinderella story here, it's just honest about how hard whistle-blowing can be and how the consequences can stay with you for the rest of your life. But Dillon also shows that it's better to stand up proud, than to cower in fear and accept wrongdoing in the workplace. Lots of shades of grey here and no triumphalism.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Olwen

    There's an old maxim that 'evil flourishes when good men do nothing'. But if you've ever been faced with that dilemma, you know it takes an immense amount of courage to actually stand up and do something. The author has that courage in spades. This book is a narrative of his experiences as a member of the Queensland Police. Through the narrative you get a sense of his bewilderment that other people can't stand up for what is right. And yet his principles were so strong that no other course of act There's an old maxim that 'evil flourishes when good men do nothing'. But if you've ever been faced with that dilemma, you know it takes an immense amount of courage to actually stand up and do something. The author has that courage in spades. This book is a narrative of his experiences as a member of the Queensland Police. Through the narrative you get a sense of his bewilderment that other people can't stand up for what is right. And yet his principles were so strong that no other course of action was possible. It's an inspiring read.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Brad

    An interesting book and puts into the perspective of the different shades of Grey within the corruption in Queensland from the Moonlight state to the Fitzgerald Inquiry. Was nice to read about Col Dillon an ex police officer about his trials and tribulations as an indigenous officer within the Qld police force and beyond. Worth the read to get some more background into the time period of the 1980s.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Theresa

  11. 5 out of 5

    unholy trinity

  12. 4 out of 5

    Samantha Carter

  13. 5 out of 5

    Matt John

  14. 4 out of 5

    Grahame Kinsela

  15. 4 out of 5

    Michael Smith

  16. 5 out of 5

    Bree Jay

  17. 4 out of 5

    Megan

  18. 4 out of 5

    CJ

  19. 5 out of 5

    Stan Anderson

  20. 4 out of 5

    Karen

  21. 5 out of 5

    Garret

  22. 5 out of 5

    Shahed Sharify

  23. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn Voight

  24. 4 out of 5

    Darol Frederick Harrison

  25. 5 out of 5

    Lyn

  26. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne Colfax

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nic Smeelie

  28. 4 out of 5

    Steve Fyvie

  29. 5 out of 5

    marilyn brodie

  30. 5 out of 5

    Trish

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