Carl Williams killed a lot of people, and he's proud of what he did.
The Melbourne gangland war of the late 1990s and early 2000s was a real war, Williams insists in two extraordinary letters to his mother, written from the prison where he is now serving 35 years. He says he was fighting to protect the lives of his family, and himself.
"Yes I did what I did. I am guilty of defending my loved ones from being killed..."
"I killed or played a role in killing people who were planning to kill me and for that I have lost my freedom for the best part of my life. Everyday soldiers have to kill the enemy, otherwise the enemy will kill them."
"Just for a moment please try putting yourself in my shoes. It was my 29th birthday. As far as I was concerned I didn't have a worry in the world. That is until I went and met someone whom I thought was a friend of mine [Mark Moran] only to end up getting shot by him and his brother … because they were money hungry, greedy control freaks who I wouldn't bow down too [sic]."
"From the day I was shot my life changed forever and in the end those two are dead and the price I have to pay for standing up for myself is the loss of my freedom from the young age of 33 years old until the ripe old age of 71."
"I am the first to admit that I wish that I could turn back time and what happened never did … although I must confess I am certainly not ashamed of the lengths I was forced to take to protect myself and my loved ones.
"I am no saint … but the people I killed were far worse people than I will ever be … I never killed or harmed any innocent people."
"I was in a kill or be killed situation … I will always be able to see and talk to my loved ones … and that is alot [sic] better than the scumbags who shot me can do.
"I will always be able to look in the mirror and be very proud of the person I see."
Police believe Williams was connected to the deaths of up to 12 men...
Williams is none too happy about the way he is portrayed in the Underbelly TV series :
Yes, bullshit indeed. Imagine portraying a speed-dealing multiple murderer as a brain dead dickhead?
"I don't mind them telling the truth about me, but telling lies and painting me out like some kind of dickhead who is brain dead - well that's just bullshit."
You can read the Carl Williams letters in full here and here.