John Silvester

Pre-eminent crime reporter and writer.


John Silvester is a Walkley Award winner and Victoria’s most experienced crime reporter and has covered the beat since the late 1970s.

Current work

He is a professional public speaker who regularly addresses, police, Judicial, legal and corporate conferences.

He is the senior crime reporter for The Age and writes the Walkley Award winning Naked City column. He appears weekly on 3AW as crime commentator Sly of the Underworld. He has given evidence in Royal Commissions on crime and corruption.

Previous experience

He has written, edited and published crime books that have sold more than 1 million copies in Australia and has won industry awards for print, radio, television and on-line reporting.

His work was adapted into the top rating Underbelly television series shown on Channel Nine and he has acted as presenter in a series of critically acclaimed television crime documentaries.

He won the 2007 Graham Perkin Australian Journalist of the Year and was highly commended in the same award in 1998 and 2014.

In 2008 he was judged the Victoria Law Foundation Legal Reporter of the Year.

He has won not just a Walkley Award, but seven Melbourne Press Club Quill awards, nine Victorian Law Foundation Awards, three Walkley Awards, a Ned Kelly Award for true crime writing and a Ned Kelly lifetime achievement award.

He presented the ABC documentary Trigger Point, an in depth examination of police shootings in Victoria and Conviction – the Logie winning ABC special on the murder of Jill Meagher.