True love for crime

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Television - KYLIE WIL­LIAMS

AU­THOR Tara Moss is ex­cited about the new se­ries of true crime show Tough Nuts be­cause it in­cludes a fe­male crim­i­nal for the first time.

Aus­tralian crim­i­nals pro­filed in this se­ries in­clude Ge­orge Free­man, Niko­lai Radev and Tilly Devine. And it’s Devine that fas­ci­nates Moss, the show’s host, the most.

Moss ( pic­tured) says Devine, played in the show by Toni Pearen, was not only a bru­tal, vi­o­lent crim­i­nal but smart enough to evade the law on a tech­ni­cal­ity.

‘‘ What I find the most com­pelling about her story is she was this ra­zor-wield­ing brothel madam at a time when broth­els were il­le­gal but the law said a man can­not ben­e­fit from the earn­ings of a pros­ti­tute and as a woman they couldn’t pros­e­cute her for it,’’ she says. ‘‘ They re­ally didn’t see Tilly Devine com­ing.’’ The well cre­den­tialled Moss, who is also a cer­ti­fied pri­vate in­ves­ti­ga­tor and stud­ied at the FBI Academy at Quan­tico, says Devine is the first fe­male crim­i­nal to make it on to the show.

‘‘ We have our first fe­male tough nut [ this sea­son] and I was very ex­cited to have her on be­cause I did feel fe­male crim­i­nal­ity should fea­ture be­cause it is a fact of life,’’ she says.

‘‘ It’s less com­mon than male crim­i­nal­ity but we still have some ex­plo­sive ex­am­ples and Tilly Devine was one of those.’’

Moss says she’s al­ways been fas­ci­nated by the dark side of hu­man na­ture and was in­ter­ested in Gothic hor­ror nov­els, Agatha Christie books, the Perry Ma­son tele­vi­sion se­ries and hor­ror movies from a young age.

‘‘ I’m the type of per­son that feels bad if I even in­sult some­one let alone com­mit a crime, so I would be a ter­ri­ble crim­i­nal but that doesn’t stop me from be­ing fas­ci­nated by the peo­ple who make those choices,’’ she says.

This week’s episode fo­cuses on John Fred­er­ick ‘‘ Chow Hayes’’, known as Aus­tralia’s first gang­ster. Hayes ruled the Syd­ney un­der­world for al­most 30 years.

Tough Nuts, CI Net­work, Sun­day, 12.30pm

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