7News Spotlight: Aug 23

Ross Coulthart revisits a Family Court Murders case he covered in 2013.

7News Spotlight revisits a story previously covered by reporter Ross Coulthart in Sunday Night in 2013.

Known as ‘The Family Court Murders’ Seven will look into a possible new victim on the eve of a sentencing hearing.

Coulthart said: “The day we confronted Len Warwick was really the beginning of the end for him. It is a privilege to be revisiting this investigation, which ultimately led to the arrest and conviction of truly one of the most cruel and calculated killers this country has ever seen. And to finally see justice after 40 years for so many innocent people whose lives were destroyed.”

For more than three decades, the seven crimes known as the Family Court Murders remained the worst series of unsolved serial killings in Australian criminal history.

Between 1980 and 1985 in Sydney, four people were murdered and dozens critically injured in a cruel five-year reign of terror aimed at the very heart of the country’s judicial system – five bombings and multiple shootings targeting judges of the Family Court of Australia, their families, a lawyer and innocent members of the public.

There was only ever one prime suspect linked to all seven crimes but despite years of surveillance he was never charged.

Leonard Warwick – ex-army, ex-fireman, crack shooter and expert ‘bushie’ – thought he was invincible, that he’d got away with murder.

But in 2013, a major Seven investigation led by award-winning journalist Ross Coulthart would blow the case wide open.

For the very first time in more than a quarter of a century, all the main witnesses who until that point had been too afraid to speak out, including Warwick’s daughter and ex-wife, would describe the events that rocked Australia.

Coulthart’s forensic investigation would put the horrific murders and bombings back in the public focus – and in the Spotlight of authorities.

Unknown to Warwick, and long forgotten by police, was the crucial mistake that would bring him down. Buried deep in a box of archived evidence, Warwick’s blood collected from one of the bomb sites that would be analysed using advanced DNA technology.

Now, on the eve of Leonard Warwick’s sentencing hearing for the crimes, Coulthart returns to the most dangerous story of his career with the next chapter and major new development in this ground-breaking investigation – was there in fact another victim?

Featuring new information from key witnesses and those at the centre of the years-long legal fight in bringing down the most evil man in Australia – and justice to his many victims.

Sunday at 8.30pm on Seven.

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