The former wife of slain underworld boss Carl Williams has launched a passionate defence of her former husband and denied saying she felt sorry for an ex-detective accused of murder.
Roberta Williams reacted with fury at an inquest into the murders of a police informer and his wife when a lawyer representing former drug squad detective Paul Dale described Carl Williams as a ‘‘disgraceful and despicable’’ person.
The lawyer, Geoffrey Steward, asked Ms Williams on Wednesday how she would respond to that sort of character assessment.
Jason Moran was Carl Williams' gangland rival. Photo: Matthew Bouwmeester
Ms Williams fired back: ‘‘Carl was a loving, caring family man who adored my children and took them on like they were his own and then we were married. You are a disgraceful person to even mention that of someone who is dead, God rest his soul.
‘‘To me, someone who takes an oath as a police officer and does what he does is disgraceful, not my ex-husband and the father of my children.’’
The inquest into the 2004 murder of police informer Terence Hodson and his wife Christine has heard Mr Dale and hit man Rodney Collins were charged in 2009 with murdering Mr Hodson. Collins was also charged with killing Mrs Hodson.
But the cases against both men collapsed when Williams was bashed to death in prison in 2010.
Mr Dale and Collins, who is serving time in jail for an unrelated double murder, both deny any involvement in the murders of the Hodsons at their Kew home.
Mr Hodson had agreed to give evidence about alleged police corruption before he was killed, the Coroners Court has heard.
The inquest heard Ms Williams was last year quoted in The Weekend Australian as saying Carl Williams had made up a story he told police claiming Mr Dale wanted Mr Hodson killed.
The article also quoted Ms Williams as saying she felt sorry for Mr Dale.
But Ms Williams on Wednesday denied she had said that to the reporter who wrote the article.
She said she hated Mr Dale and would ‘‘spit in his face’’ if she saw him.
The reporter is expected to give evidence on Thursday.
Ms Williams said she and her children had hoped the statement Carl Williams gave police against Mr Dale and Collins would earn him a discount on his jail term.
She said she had never discussed with Williams what he planned to tell police, as she was only interested in her children’s safety.
She also confirmed she was suing the state of Victoria over Williams’ murder in custody.
Earlier, a man who can only be identified as Witness B told the inquest that Williams had told him he ordered Mr Hodson to be killed on behalf of Mr Dale.
Witness B said Williams had also told him Mr Dale offered to kill Williams’ rival, Jason Moran, in return for $150,000.
He said Williams told him he had declined Mr Dale’s offer. ‘‘He had enough people working on the job,’’ Witness B said.
The inquest heard Williams wanted a rocket launcher to destroy a house in Gladstone Park, where he suspected Moran was living.
Witness B said Williams was provided with three or four addresses by Mr Dale where Moran could have been living.
‘‘They wanted me to supply them with a rocket launcher and blow up the whole house,’’ Witness B said.
Asked who would have got the rocket launcher, Witness B said: ‘‘I would have got that.’’
Moran and associate Pasquale Barbaro were murdered in front of children at an Auskick football clinic in North Essendon in June 2003.
Mr Dale and Collins were this week excused from giving evidence at the inquest, even with a certificate protecting them from self-incrimination.
The inquest continues before State Coroner Ian Gray.