Without Trevor Haken’s nine months of courageous undercover work the Wood Royal Commission would have been much ado about nothing. Haken secured the now infamous Trev-Cam shots with Insp “Chook” Fowler, during which he obtained “irrefutable taped evidence against other high-ranking police officers and hardened criminals.” Without this, and his subsequent testimony over nine years, the Wood Royal Commission would have been a Royal wash-out.

That Haken should now find himself “hung out to dry” – not properly compensated for being a whistle-blower while other policemen who were implicated with him were never charged – is a sad indictment of the witness protection scheme and a likely disincentive to others who might be considering blowing the whistle on police corruption.

Haken now reckons that he would have been far better off doing time: “It would have probably been for a couple of years and not the life sentence that I’ve got now,” he said in Sunday’s Sun Herald. Surely after nearly a decade of full co-operation while living in a state of almost solitary confinement, cut-off from his past, not safely able to visit his elderly mother and children regularly, he’s done his time.

Peter Fray

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