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Operation Raymond Hoser

Jude McCulloch

Raymond Hoser:Victoria Police Corruption l & 2

(Kotabi Publications, $29.95 each).

THINK ELROY'S MANIC tabloid Hush-Hush, think gonzo and add a dash of Mike Moore of The Awful Truth fame, and you're on the way to the lurid rush of 'Australia's most frequently banned author' and the books 'the Victoria Police don't want you to read'. I hate to agree with them but they might have a point. If you value your sanity and suspect your grip on reality could be a tad tenuous, perhaps you should give these titles a miss. On the other hand, maybe Hoser has elevated getting in the face and up the nose of the police, minor functionaries, the judiciary, and a whole host of government agencies to the level of performance art. The books are only part of his project which to date includes a quest for State Parliament, hosting Australia's possibly most defamatory web site, and innumerable court appearances.

The books are full of wild anecdotes. My favourite, and there are a host of gems to choose from, is the battle - detailed over thirty pages - with a certain 'bent bureaucrat' and her offsider, 'little Hitler', which resulted in an injury to the author, documented in a photograph, captioned, 'head wound ... The injury to the author's head after [named] bent bureaucrat went ballistic and attacked him without provocation'. The writing has the compelling if queasy quality of the tackiest true crime. Many readers will be deeply shocked and find these chronicles literally incredible. But take it from me; what he writes about the Victoria Police is at least as accurate as what passes for news in the mainstream media, and definitely a lot more fun. Madman or cult hero? Who knows, but no doubt we will hear more from Mr Hoser. 'Remember, you heard it first here: off the record, on the Q.T. and very Hush-Hush!'

Jude McCulloch lectures in Police Studies at Deakin University.

Overland 168, 2002 page 108

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