Dhakota Williams, daughter of gangland murderer Carl Williams, shares her side of the story to 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9
Dhakota Williams, daughter of gangland murderer Carl Williams, shares her side of the story to 60 Minutes. Picture: Channel 9

'It doesn't make sense': Truth gangster’s daughter needs

THE daughter of Carl and Roberta Williams, Dhakota, reveals an inside story like no other on this week's 60 Minutes, airing on Sunday night.

Dhakota spoke to reporter Liam Bartlett about an underbelly story like no other. Confessions, revelations and the big one - who ordered the infamous hit on gangland king Dad, Carl?

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DHAKOTA Williams should be the national poster girl for the perennial "Nature versus Nurture?" debate.

With a foot firmly planted in the strangest of both camps, the Melbourne teenager has had more chances than most to be negatively influenced by either her familial lineage or the rotten, criminal environment she was raised in.

Indeed, if there is anyone in the country who deserves either a full-time therapist or a good excuse for going off the rails, it's her.

When Dhakota was born in 2001 her father Carl was already a successful drug manufacturer and trafficker in partnership with his dad George, Dhakota's grandfather.

Carl would also become a murderer, ordering the killings of at least four men and according to police, possibly more which have never been proven.

Carl Williams and daughter Dhakota. She doesn’t remember time spent with him at home. She remembers the jail visits. Picture: Channel 9
Carl Williams and daughter Dhakota. She doesn’t remember time spent with him at home. She remembers the jail visits. Picture: Channel 9

His role in the Victorian gangland wars, immortalised in the Underbelly series, was both pivotal and lethal and the company he kept would not have been particularly beneficial to a little girl in her developmental years.

Dhakota's babysitter, for example, or 'Uncle Andrew' as he was lovingly referred to was a professional hit-man, suspected of being responsible for at least five murders.

Her mother Roberta was also involved, spending a stint in jail for a drug conviction while Dhakota was still in nappies.

Dhakota and Carl. She remembers being excited on days she’d get two letters from the prison mailroom. One from her father, the other from her grandfather. Picture: News Corp
Dhakota and Carl. She remembers being excited on days she’d get two letters from the prison mailroom. One from her father, the other from her grandfather. Picture: News Corp

Fortunately, the sentence wasn't a long one, but the same can't be said for Carl, who could count the time spent at home enjoying his new daughter in months rather than years.

Now on the verge of adulthood, Dhakota says she has no memory of her father actually living in the family residence during her childhood at all.

Rather her remaining recollection is a series of prison trips to give her dad a hug and sit on his lap in the jail's visitor room.

To complete the dysfunction, she would sometimes get excited about receiving two letters in the post from the prison mailroom; one from her father and the other, her Pop - serving time in the same jail.

By the time she was nine, Carl was dead, murdered by another violent criminal in the common area of a high security unit at Barwon Prison before being dragged off face down to his cell.

Carl Williams’ gravestone. He was murdered in jail when Dhakota was 9 years old. Picture: Jay Town
Carl Williams’ gravestone. He was murdered in jail when Dhakota was 9 years old. Picture: Jay Town

The legacy he left her hardly seems fair but being the only child of one of Australia's most notorious gangsters is not a mantle that Dhakota wants to accept.

Nor is she prepared to even countenance the negative image of her father's criminal actions.

Surprisingly she admitted that to this day she has never spoken to her mother about what her dad did.

And despite the volumes of material on the internet documenting those dark chapters, Dhakota says she resists the temptation to google any of the sordid details. To her, Carl will always be a "loving, good person".

It's a position that's easily seen as a halfway house; somewhere between blissful ignorance and rose-coloured glasses but her mum appears to be the key to her one-sided positivity.

Roberta says that she has shielded her, as much as possible from the horrors of her father's past and confirms that there are still incidents of which she may have absolutely no knowledge.

An artist-enhanced version of a CCTV still showing Carl Williams’ killer, Matthew Johnson standing behind Williams before his murder in Barwon Prison. Picture: Supplied
An artist-enhanced version of a CCTV still showing Carl Williams’ killer, Matthew Johnson standing behind Williams before his murder in Barwon Prison. Picture: Supplied

Like the time Carl took a handful of shots at Roberta when she was heavily pregnant with Dhakota.

Luckily for both of them, he missed, but Roberta says her daughter shouldn't have to hear about those sorts of things because "she's a little girl, she needs to be a little girl".

But this a little girl on the cusp of womanhood and against the backdrop of a woeful childhood, she is surprisingly more concerned with what others think about her and not offending anyone than being self-absorbed and churlish.

While she acknowledges the weight of her dad's dreadful reputation, Dhakota is adamant it won't prevent her prevailing on the right side of the law and says, "I can become a good person."

However, on 60 Minutes, Dhakota explains there is one piece of history that she does want to explore - how it was that her dad was killed in a maximum-security unit in front of CCTV cameras that were somehow not being monitored.

- 60 Minutes' interview with Dhakota Williams airs on Sunday night at 8.40pm on Channel 9. Visit the 60 Minutes website for more details.



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