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Evil Life : The True Story of the Calabrian Mafia in Australia - Clive Small

Evil Life

The True Story of the Calabrian Mafia in Australia

Paperback Published: 1st February 2016
ISBN: 9781742374925
Number Of Pages: 368

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The Calabrian Mafia in Australia is alive and well. This is the first time its real story in this country has ever been told.

The Calabrian mafia is Australia's oldest, largest and most ruthless crime syndicate, trafficking drugs worth billions of dollars and laundering the proceeds through sophisticated international networks.

Enforcing discipline with age-old tools of violence and intimidation, the Calabrians have been responsible for nearly 40 murders in Australia since the mid-1970s and many more before that. Mafia families in Australia report directly to bosses in Calabria and profits are funnelled back to the mother organisation. Yet despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary, Federal and State law enforcement agencies have long assured the public that there is no Calabrian mafia in Australia.

With powerful and uncompromising clarity, Evil Life shatters this myth. Drawing on court documents and unreleased intelligence reports, as well as interviews with well-informed sources, the authors reveal how the Calabrian mafia evolved from its beginnings on the north Queensland cane fields in the 1920s to establish cells in every major capital city, making Australia a key outpost in the world of global organised crime.

About the Author

Clive Small and Tom Gilling are the authors of the bestselling Smack Express, Blood Money, Milat and Betrayed. Clive is a former Assistant Commissioner of Police, NSW.

Tom Gilling is a highly regarded investigative journalist and fiction writer.

Industry Reviews

A significant historical account of the Australian 'Ndrangheta... a particularly timely account * Adelaide Advertiser *
A must-read for cops, pollies and anyone with an interest in true crime... Compulsory reading... An invaluable work of social history. * Crikey *
This groundbreaking and authoritative history of Australia's oldest and most durable criminal organisation will also be avidly read in Italy, where there has been enormous recent interest in the Australian branch of a global criminal franchise about which little has hitherto been known. * Weekend Australian *
This is a meticulously detailed account of what the Italian organised crime gang has been up to Down Under... It is a gripping true-crime read * Townsville Eye *


About the authors

Authors' note


1 The Black Hand

2 New country, new rackets

3 A market for murder

4 The family business

5 The Toronto connection

6 Heroin Central

7 No ordinary crop

8 The Sunshine State

9 Omerta

10 Infiltration

11 It's only revenge

12 Setbacks

13 The South Americans

14 The enemy they dare not name

15 Political connections

16 Ecstasy by the tonne

17 Big debts, little debts

18 A year of living dangerously

19 Behind bars

20 The grass is (always) greener

21 The enemy within


1 Translation of letter written by Antonio Brando, Melbourne, to Domenico Belle and companions, 24 August 1928

2 Translation of letter written by Antonio Brando, Melbourne, to Domenico Belle, 17 September 1928

3 Translation of letter written by Rocco Trimarchi, Griffith, to Domenico Belle, 26 March 1929

4 Translation of Ritual of the Camorra Society, 15 December 1930

5 Translation of documents relating to the formation of a society found at the residence of Francesco Angilletta, Preston, 14 April 1963

6 Australian 'ndrangheta killings, 1973-2008



ISBN: 9781742374925
ISBN-10: 1742374921
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 368
Published: 1st February 2016
Publisher: Allen & Unwin
Country of Publication: AU
Dimensions (cm): 23.4 x 15.3  x 3.0
Weight (kg): 0.52
Edition Number: 1

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