true crime

Inside the dangerous life of a gangland wife.

“He was soft and gentle and always kind, and helped me, and was never aggressive in any way shape or form.”

That’s how Roberta Williams reflected on her late ex-husband in last night’s episode of Sunday Night. Carl Williams. A father to her children. A gangland drug king. A convicted murderer.

Having been blind to his crimes, having looked the other way, even excused them for so many years, the 47-year-old convicted drug trafficker is now receiving a new picture of the man thanks to a collection of intimate letters he penned in prison.

Williams was beaten to death by a fellow inmate in 2010, three years into a 35-year sentence for the murder of four people during Melbourne’s bloody gangland wars.

As told by Sunday Night, Roberta won a lengthy battle with police to obtain Carl’s jailhouse computer where she discovered the notes.

“Yes, it shocks me. Some of the things I’ve read in the computer have kind of shocked me that he could look me in the face and be one person and I’ve read something and he’s another.”

Among the revelations, that he may have been responsible for more than the four murders for which he was convicted.

“Maybe two more,” she said. “You know, names have come up on his computer.”

Having previously admitted to being more upset about Carl’s infidelity than his crimes, to the point that she was glad notorious underworld figure Lewis Moran was murdered, Roberta told the programme she’s since changed her tune.

“Reflecting back on the lives lost now and his life, and thinking of who gets hurt in the motion of all this, it’s quite sad and disturbing,” she said.

“To kill somebody is just not on. Nobody’s got any right to take anybody’s life.”


Dhakota Williams at her father's funeral. Image: Getty.

There's another little heard-from character in this sensational story - Carl's daughter Dhakota.

Now a teenager, and fully aware of his past, she still choose to remember Carl as "a loving, caring dad."

"I remember going into visit him [in prison] and he would tickle my arms and back and give me hugs," said Dhakota.

"And one time I went in and he gave me a bracelet."

The 15-year-old admits that while she loved her father, growing up with his surname, with his seedy legacy shadowing her and her step-siblings, was not easy.

“Yeah [it was difficult]. Friends' parents not letting kids come over and things," said Dhakota.

"But they don’t really know what we’re like. We’re normal, we’re good people. It may not seem like that but we are.”

“He did it for us," she said. "You can tell that he did it for his family.”