Thats the big topical story in the series. Digging into the details of the Lawyer X story, did it shock you? Can you even be shocked at this stage?
I think theres a lot more in the Lawyer X story. I think Nicola Gobbos been quite adroit in managing her PR and avoiding interrogation by the media and the Royal Commission. So we see her version through the ABC. Theres a couple of live cases that she could assist with, that we cover: the murders of Terry and Christine Hodson, and Shane Chartres-Abbott. We knew that the informer who we cant name or well all go to jail made up the story, for reasons best known to himself. Now that more has been revealed to the Royal Commission, it fits back into this story for us, and we go, aha! This is how it happened; she was there behind the informer who we call the Author for him to manufacture this statement. So thats a live angle. Also her role in the Paul Dale saga: theres a lot more to tell there.
Do you ever get depressed, spending so much time with the dark side of human nature?
Its interesting, isnt it: we started looking at [former detective and convicted murderer] Roger Rogerson in that context; the dark side. People said that he was a good guy who crossed to the darkness, but I dont think so: he started off on the dark side. I think he was the darkness. I dont get depressed its intriguing for me. Its a longitudinal study of human nature youre involved with. I often get accused of being too close to the crook have you heard that one? I get that all the time. To which I reply, Im now doing a podcast with the NSW Police, so am I too close to the cops now?
In some cases, there are different social settings that influence it, very much. But I think youve just got to be empathetic at all times and not judgmental, if youre going to have any success. I think its easy to gloss over and tell the story from a sort of medium altitude, but its so much more interesting when you get into the character side, and the arcs of people, in our stories. And how people can be redeemed someone like Jodie Harris, the catch me if you can Queen of Con, as we call her. She was the most cunning, amazing confidence trickster, up with the best of them. Yet she did her jail term, and shes not offended again. So often in the media we cast these people as good or bad. But when you get down into the weeds of this, its not always like this. Thats what we try to do, in the podcast and then understanding it in terms of character in our TV pieces.
Australian Crime Stories is on Nine, Wednesday, 8.30pm