The hanged man: the life & death of Ronald Ryan
Ronald Ryan was hanged in Melbourne on February 3, 1967 following his conviction for the shooting murder of a prison warder during his daring escape from the maximum-security Pentridge prison. Following Ryan's death, state governments moved to abolish the death penalty, and he became the last man to be hanged in Australia. Today, more than 30 years later, the Ryan case still prompts spirited debate about the guilty finding against the condemned man, the merits of capital punishment in general, and the politics behind the execution. Mike Richards' original, comprehensive research and persuasive insights have produced a definitive account of the life and death of the man whose execution stopped a nation.
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The author Mike Richards claims to draw on previously unpublished documents and personal accounts. That is a lie!
Richards also claims this book reveals the truth about Ryan’s guilt. That is a lie!
Fact is, and remains to this day, that Ronald Ryan was convicted of murder and later hanged based solely on unsigned and unrecorded allegations of “hearsay” said to have been made by Ryan to police. There is NO SCIENTIFIC BALLISTIC FORENSIC EVIDENCE anywhere, to prove Ryan was guilty of murder beyond reasonable doubt. Richards book appears to his point of view that Ryan was guilty. Other material in Richards book contains an obvious bias towards his own personal opinion and belief. Ryan's attorney Dr Philip Opas and other legal professionals pointed out to ACADP that the contents of Richards book has intentionally been slanted toward that bias and there’s also the fact that factual information, which does not support Richards personal views, have deliberately been omitted from the book. Richards told the ABC on February 6, 2007 that he believed Ronald Ryan was guilty as he confessed to a number of people. For the record, allegations of confessions (denied by Ryan) are not proof of guilt under Australian law. Richards is not a lawyer and was not involved in the Ryan case. Richards was simply one of many thousands of protesters against Ronald Ryan’s hanging.
The facts surrounding Ryan's wrongful conviction remain to this day - they are the facts that cannot be disputed, distorted nor manipulated - the “facts” that cannot lie.