Colin Dillon had wanted to be a policeman from a very early age. Australia’s highest ranking indigenous police officer, first ever of his race to join the police force anywhere in the nation and descendant of the ‘Kumbumem’ people, he is a man who carried out this chosen role with integrity, honesty and compassion. However, his book ‘Code of Silence’ focuses more on his 36 year experience in the Queensland police force rather than his cultural heritage. It chronicles his career both as a uniformed and plain clothed member of the police force, with some reference as to how racism in Queensland of the late 1960s provided additional challenges.
In 1987 Colin Dillon decided to give evidence at the Fitzgerald Commission of Inquiry which uncovered widespread corruption and exposed several high ranking members of the Queensland Police Force as being corrupt and having benefited from crime. In ‘Code of Silence’ he highlights the risks an honorable policeman takes when becoming a whistle blower. The wrath which his evidence incurred from his colleagues and the threats to his family from those he exposed would have daunted a less upright person, but Colin Dillon against the advice of friends and family decided to do what he knew was right.
This very thought-provoking book gives the reader insight into the day to day responsibilities of the police working in a wide range of criminal activities – drugs, alcohol, prostitution, money laundering etc. and how those who were trusted to uphold the law became/were corrupted and undermined the very laws they are entrusted to uphold. Anecdotal examples give the reader a very clear understanding of the challenges which faced Colin Dillon and how he strived to remain dignified and true to his chosen profession.
The author is successful in giving a balanced, unbiased account of his time in the Queensland Police Force and of his treatment by the system, his superiors and his peers. He continually gives credit to those, who despite the odds, remained true to the oath to which they swore.
‘Code of Silence’ is not your usual true crime book. This time the crimes are committed by those who should have defended the law; not abuse or undermined it! A must read for all avid true crime readers.
|Author||Colin Dillon with Tom Gilling|
|Publisher||Allen & Unwin|
|Distributor||Allen & Unwin|