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2003ArticlesDeceased PoliceFacialFemaleFormer PoliceFuneralGenderHusband & WifeIn UniformIncompleteLocationMaleNoNSWOf eventPhotosStateUnknownWall of RemembranceYear

Herbert Brynmor TALARICO


Herbert Brynmor TALARICO


* Nickname:  ?

Late of  ? 


Relations in ‘the job’:

“possible” relation in ‘the job‘:    ?


NSW Police Training College – Penrith –  Class #  “possibly” 002 or 020 


New South Wales Police Force


Regd. #  05691


Rank:  Commenced Training at  ? Police Academy on Monday 26 May 1947 ( aged 22 years, 10 months, 3 days )

Probationary Constable- appointed ? ? ? 

Constable – appointed ? ? ? 

Constable 1st Class – appointed ? ? ? 

Detective – appointed ? ? ? ( YES )

Senior Constable – appointed ? ? ? 

Leading Senior Constable – appointed ? ? ? ( N/A )

Sergeant 3rd Class – appointed ? ? ? 

Sergeant 2nd Class – appointed 1 January 1968

Sergeant 1st Class – appointed 19 May 1973

Inspector 3rd Class – appointed 25 June 1976

Inspector – appointed 14 April 1978

Senior Inspector – appointed 1 April 1981

Superintendent – appointed ? ? ? 

Chief Superintendent – appointed ? ? ?

Information would be appreciated with the Final Rank and Retirement date

Final Rank: =  ?


Stations?, Moss Vale ( Inspector )( 1981 ),


Time employed ( Paid ) with NSW Police:  From:  26 May 1947   to   ? ? ?? years,

Service ( From Training Date ) period: From 26 May 1946     to     ? ? ?  ? years,  Service



Retirement / Leaving age:?

Time in Retirement from Police?


Awards:  No Find on Australian Honours system for any other National or State Award.

Queen’s Commendation for Brave Conduct ( Imperial ) – granted 20 February 1973 ( Det Sgt 2/c )( in company of SenCon Robert John McNAMARA ) ( Apprehend an armed man )

Herb TALARICO Herbert TALARICOScenes at the siege in Hastings Parade, Bondi today.A detective with a rifle at the scene of the siege, Det. Sgt. Herb Talarico.

Detective Sgt. H. Talarico and Det. Adrian Allingham are flying to Melbourne this morning with the bomb found at Sydney Airport.

September 11, 1969.

( Photo by Noel Harold Stubbs / Fairfax Media via Getty Images ).



 Born:  Wednesday 23 July 1924 in Hornsby, NSW

Died on:  1 October 2003 in Tuggerah Lakes, NSW

Age:  79 years, 2 months, 8 days

Organ Donor:  Y / N / ?



Event location:   ?

Event / Diagnosis date ?


Funeral date? October 2003

Funeral location?




Wake location???

Wake date???



Funeral Parlour: ?


Buried at?

Grave LocationSection:          Row?         Plot?

Grave GPS?,       ?


Memorial / Plaque / Monument located at?

Dedication date of Memorial / Plaque / Monument: Nil – at this time ( December 2023 )



HERB is NOT mentioned on the Police Wall of Remembrance  *NEED MORE INFO





May they forever Rest In Peace 

Australian Police YouTube Channel


Local superintendent remembered following famous unclaimed artwork display Mariam Koslay By Mariam Koslay Updated September 22 2017 – 2:27pm,




Married to Margaret Elizabeth ( Betty ) TALARICO

Betty died on 6 March 2014 and her funeral was 13 March 2014.

They Married in 1924.  Margaret was 19 old at time of Marriage.


An Australian Business Number ( ABN ) lookup reveals ABN 50 631 626 936 which appeared to be valid from September 2000 to 1 October 2003 when it was Cancelled.



An search shows that Herbert died sometime in 2003.



02/10/2003: Herb Talarico passed away last night. Tuggerah Lakes Memorial Pistol Club, It’s committee and members express condolences to Herb’s family. Herb will be sorely missed.

news archive

… of an eastern suburbs break-and-enter investigation led by the late and famous detective Herb … Talarico, who was involved in the arrest of the infamous bank robber and prison escapee Darcy Dugan. Mr …
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… of an eastern suburbs break and enter investigation lead by the legendary late detective Herb … Talarico, who was involved in the arrest of the Qantas bomb hoax extortionist Peter Macari and the infamous …

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From the Archives, 1969: Bondi siege ends peacefully

50 years ago, an armed man barricaded himself in a block of flats in Hastings Parade, Bondi. For Detective-Constable John Tracey, 24, it was a day to remember.

By Staff reporter

First published in the Sydney Morning Herald on September 10, 1969

For 30 minutes yesterday a Bondi detective sat on a garden fence with the barrel of a loaded, high-powered rifle pointed at him.

And talked, and talked.

Passers-by shelter behind fences near the scene of the siege in Hastings Parade, Bondi on September 9, 1969Credit: Laurie Shea
Passers-by shelter behind fences near the scene of the siege in Hastings Parade, Bondi on September 9, 1969Credit: Laurie Shea


And while he talked, all available police from the Eastern Suburbs, the Riot and Emergency Squads, armed with revolvers, rifles, shotguns, tear-gas and bullet proof shields, arrived to help him.

They surrounded a block of flats in Hastings Parade, Bondi, in which an armed man had barricaded himself and refused to come out.

For Detective-Constable John Tracey ( NSWPF # 11404 ), 24, it was a day to remember.

The man had fired one bullet through the front door of the ground floor flat and later fired four others into the garden.

Detective Tracey sat only eight feet away, the barrel of the .22 Magnum pointed at him.

So Detective Tracey talked. He asked the man what his troubles were, keeping him occupied until the other police arrived.


Police run forward to grab the rifle which had been dropped from the window by a man. September 9, 1969.Credit: Laurie Shea
Police run forward to grab the rifle which had been dropped from the window by a man. September 9, 1969. Credit: Laurie Shea


After a siege that lasted 1 ½ hours the man was finally persuaded to drop the rifle, and was captured without police firing a shot.

The drama began at about 11.45 a.m. yesterday when Detective Tracey and Detective Robert Campbell, both of Bondi, were called to the flat.

As the two detectives approached the flat door, a man pointed a rifle over a windowsill.

It was then that Detective Tracey began talking. He lit a cigarette and gradually eased himself on to the sandstone garden fence.

The Riot and Emergency Squad men stayed at a distance, their weapons out of sight.

The man’s girl friend was brought to the scene and she spoke to him from the veranda of a nearby house.

Police spoke to him through a loud-hailer, urging him to give himself up.

About 1 o’clock the man seemed ready to do so.

Holding the rifle by the barrel, he pushed it through the open window.

Then, abruptly, he dragged it in again and fired four shots into the front garden.

A small crowd of sightseers at both ends of Hastings Parade retreated.

Then, at 1.16 p.m., the man dropped the rifle into the garden.

As he did so, a detective grabbed his wrist, while Detective-Sergeant R. Phillips ( NSWPF # 7413 ) and Detective-Constables Nelson Chad ( NSWPF # 8675 ) and D. Mussey ( possibly D.A. MussingNSWPF # 11476 )( No Mussey in 1968 – 1969 Stud Books ) rushed into the flat and overpowered him.

A man being carried by police from the scene of the siege on September 9, 1969.Credit: Laurie Shea
A man being carried by police from the scene of the siege on September 9, 1969. Credit: Laurie Shea

A 24-year-old man was later charged at Paddington police station with unlawfully discharging a firearm in a public street and with wilful damage to a flat door. He will appear in Paddington Court of Petty Sessions today.

From the Archives, 1969: Bondi siege ends peacefully

Police riddle of who owns painting with a colourful past

By Rachel Olding

IT IS an enigmatic depiction of a voluptuous woman being tempted by a devilish satyr, but this steamy painting may turn into one of the police force’s coldest cases.

Woman with Satyr, a nude by Norman Lindsay, was discovered in 2010 gathering dust in the vaults of the Art Gallery of NSW, with scant details of its origin and date.

Woman with Satyr.

The oil painting had been lent to the gallery by the police in 1980, yet neither they nor the gallery had any records as to how it came to be in their possession.

After hitting several dead ends, the police’s search for the painting’s owner has taken a new twist with much of the artwork’s colourful past coming to light.

However, its owner may remain an enduring mystery, said the detective in charge of Operation Matisse, Tim Axtens ( NSWPF # 37860 ).

He has discovered that Woman with Satyr was taken to the Art Gallery of NSW by an exhibit officer from the former Criminal Investigation Bureau who was responsible for securing all seized drugs, firearms and valuable property in a vault beneath an old hat factory in Surry Hills.

Former Police Sergeant, Peter Chilton is now living at Mylestom.
Former Police Sergeant, Peter Chilton ( NSWPF # 07879 ) is now living at Mylestom.
A former police officer now living at Mylestom has solved the mystery of how a Norman Lindsay nude painting, Woman with Satyr came to be in the Art Gallery of NSW. But the owner of the painting remains a mystery.

Peter Chilton, now 81 and living in Bellingen on the state’s north coast, said he stored the painting with the heroin and cannabis as it struck him as being unusual and very valuable.

He believes it was seized as part of an eastern suburbs break and enter investigation lead by the legendary late detective Herb Talarico, who was involved in the arrest of the Qantas bomb hoax extortionist Peter Macari and the infamous bank robber and prison escape artist Darcy Dugan.

In 1980, the Surry Hills basement became infected with tobacco beetle and Mr Chilton had it sprayed with chlordane. Worried that the painting would be damaged, he obtained authority to transfer it to the art gallery ”for safe keeping”.

”The gallery didn’t even know it existed, they were very happy to take it,” he said. ”I expected that the police would carry on with their investigations to find the owner.”

From there, however, the painting quietly slipped between the cracks. The CIB disbanded, Detective Talarico was transferred out of Sydney, detectives either had no breakthroughs or forgot about its existence and the sensual nude went unloved for more than 30 years.

It was not until August 2010 that the gallery called the police to question the length of the loan, sparking a police investigation to not only determine how it came to be at the gallery but also return it to its rightful owner.

An inscription on the back of the painting reads ”A. Jewell/ Burraburra Ave/ Vaucluse/ f.u. 2962”. The code is an old telephone number for the Rose Bay exchange pre-World War II and Vaucluse post-World War II.

Albert Jewell was an avid and wealthy art collector who died in 1963. A surviving son in Tasmania, however, told police he believed his father was no longer in possession of the painting when it was seized in 1980 and may have even sold it before his death in 1963.

”That 17 years is an enormous gap to fill,” senior constable Axtens said. ”We’ve still got a few lines of inquiry but it may be very difficult to find the owner.”

Neither the Norman Lindsay Gallery and Museum nor Lindsay’s granddaughter, Helen Glad, an art historian, had come across the painting, which the Art Gallery of NSW said could fetch between $30,000 and $40,000 at auction.

Lindsay was a prolific artist, producing countless paintings, etchings, drawings, watercolours and sculptures until he died at 90, Ms Glad previously told the Herald.

”If it was an early work it could have been posed by my grandma Rose,” she said. ”But in the ’30s he used any number of models.”

If the painting’s owner can’t be found, senior constable Axtens would like it to be donated to a gallery for the public to enjoy.

Mr Chilton would like to see it donated to the Norman Lindsay Gallery and Museum at Faulconbridge.

”I had always hoped it would have gone there,” he said.

Police riddle of who owns painting with a colourful past

Owner unknown, but mystery Lindsay painting finds home

By Rachel Olding

HER owners will remain a mystery but at least she finally has a home – the first of a series of homes, actually.

A two-year search for the owners of a mysterious Norman Lindsay artwork has ended with few answers but the voluptuous nude will have a new home for the next 12 months on the walls of the Wagga Wagga Art Gallery.

Woman with Satyr was discovered gathering dust in the vaults of the Art Gallery of NSW in 2010, having been lent to the gallery by the police force in 1980.

With scant details about its origin and date and no record of how the police force came to possess it, or why it was in the gallery’s basement, detectives set about solving the decades-long cold case.

Along the way, much of the oil painting’s colourful past came to light, yet police say they will never know its true owner.

It was taken to the Art Gallery of NSW in 1980 by an exhibit officer from the former Criminal Investigation Bureau who was responsible for securing all seized drugs, firearms and valuable property in a vault beneath an old hat factory in Surry Hills.

Peter Chilton, now 81 and living in Bellingen on the state’s north coast, said he stored the painting with the heroin and cannabis as it struck him as being unusual and very valuable.

He believes it was seized as part of an eastern suburbs break-and-enter investigation led by the late and famous detective Herb Talarico, who was involved in the arrest of the infamous bank robber and prison escapee Darcy Dugan.

Mr Chilton moved the painting to the gallery to protect it from a tobacco beetle infestation but it was then forgotten about for 30 years.

Detective Tim Axtens spoke to relatives of the late Albert Jewell, a Vaucluse art collector whose name was inscribed on the back of the painting, but it is believed he sold the painting before he died in 1963.

Unable to track down any other owners, police have decided to lend the artwork to NSW galleries for 12-month stints.

Owner unknown, but mystery Lindsay painting finds home


Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 – 1995), Saturday 24 June 1989, page 1

Is there something to hide?

VERY senior NSW and federal police have something to hide from an impartial inquiry into police involvement in cannabis plantations in the Bungendore area and the Federal Government knows this, according to NSW Independent MP John Hatton.

For several years, Mr Hatton has been quizzing the NSW Government about the plantations, and recently called for the establishment of a Royal commission.

He has also suggested that “untainted” Victorian police be invited to investigate NSW and Federal Police involvement in up to 14 separate cannabis plantations in southern NSW.

The AFP is not impressed with Mr Hatton’s suggestions that it has some thing to hide. While senior officers might privately admit their embarrassment over the Bungendore affair, they deny strongly any suggestion of illegality on their part. They point out, correctly, that their role was investigated by former National Crime Authority Chief Justice Donald Stewart and that their members were cleared of any criminality.

Again privately, senior AFP officers suggest they were duped by their NSW colleagues. They say they got involved in Operation Seville — the code name for the Bungendore plantations exercise — with the best of honourable intentions: to catch some of the Mr Bigs. They say they were entitled to accept that their interstate colleagues were on the level. If anyone had something to hide, it was the NSW Police.

The Bungendore plantations were established on private and Crown land between 1980 and 1983. Their existence and operation were sanctioned by senior members of the AFP and the NSW Police. The operation was dubbed Operation Seville.

Activities on the plantations — which saw millions of dollars of cannabis harvested and sold — ultimately led to several men being charged last year with conspiracy to supply cannabis. Four of the men were committed for trial, but the NSW authorities have since decided not to proceed with the charges because of the unreliability of the chief prosecution witness, Giuseppe Verducci. One of two Bungendore

crops was grown on Verducci’s property, Montebello. The other was on Crown land nearby.

Operation Seville turned into a monumental embarrassment for both police forces because cannabis worth millions of dollars came to be harvested and sold, despite the close watch police were meant to be keeping on activities. Some have since suggested that this occurred in spite of police involvement.

The whole purpose of the exercise was to catch the major players in the financing, distribution and selling side of organised cannabis growing. However, not one person of this type was arrested at the time. As mentioned above, several of those involved — including three men said to be important organisers — were charged last year by the NCA, but the charges against them have either been dismissed or dropped.

The AFP is quick to point out that Operation Seville had one very important outcome: the arrest of Gianfranco Tizzoni.

Police informer

Tizzoni was arrested with two other men in 1982 by Victorian police. One of the vehicles the men were travelling in to Melbourne was found to contain a large quantity of Bungendore cannabis. Tizzoni subsequently became a police informer. This led to the jailing of himself, James Bazley and George Joseph over the murder of Donald Mackay and of Bazley and Joseph over the murder of Mr Asia syndicate members Douglas and Isobel Wilson.

While the arrest of Tizzoni was a major breakthrough, the NSW and Federal police can take little credit for it. An AFP tip-off enabled the Victorians to arrest Tizzoni, but everything which followed was due to the efforts of the Victorian police. No one knew at the time what Tizzoni’s arrest would lead to.

According to Mr Hatton, police were also “associated” with several other cannabis crops during the late 1970s and early 1980s. These included: one in the Brindabellas ( in the ACT, west of Canberra ); another two

in the Bungendore area; three at Dalton ( near Gunning ); one at East Lynne ( west of Durras, on the South Coast ); one west of Eden ( on the far South Coast ); one at Michelago ( south of Canberra ); two in the Monga State Forest ( near Braidwood ); and one at Hoskinstown ( between Queanbeyan and Captains Flat ). Mr Hatton referred to only one plantation in the Brindabellas, but there were two.

Mr Hatton said he had given the National Crime Authority information about police involvement in southern NSW cannabis plantations two years ago but the NCA had not acted on it. He had also referred potential witnesses to the NCA.

Neither the NCA, because of its past record, nor the NSW Independent Commission Against Corruption, which was limited by state borders, could properly investigate the matter.

Both the Prime Minister, Bob Hawke, and the Minister for Justice, Senator Michael Tate, had rejected calls for a Royal commission. Mr Hatton wondered if the Government simply wanted to save the AFP from embarrassment or had some other reason for not wishing to pursue the matter.

Mr Hatton thought the involvement of corrupt police in cannabis growing could be proved, but nothing had been really done to investigate this. This was because too many senior police would be seriously embarrassed by the outcome.

On May 11, Mr Hatton placed a long list of questions on the notice paper of the NSW Parliament about cannabis plantations in southern NSW. Among other things, he has asked the Attorney-General, John Dowd, to detail the number of plantations observed by NSW police during Operation Seville and the duration of the operation. He wants to know the names of all police involved in the operation and whether any have been “charged” with incompetence because of their involvement.

Mr Hatton has also asked for details of all crops grown on the Southern Tablelands and South Coast between 1980 and 1985, including the size and value of crops, the amounts harvested

or “ripped of” during police surveillance, and whether any arrests were made. He wants to know who authorised the growing of the crops, what legal advice was obtained beforehand and who within the AFP and NCA knew about them.

None of the questions has so far been answered.

On May 14, Mr Hatton moved in State Parliament that a Royal Commission be established to investigate the growing of cannabis in the Monga State Forest and at Michelago and Bungendore. Among other things, he said the commission should investigate whether cannabis had been harvested and marketed from crops in the Bungendore area while these had been under surveillance.

Long report

Mr Hatton said the Royal Commission should investigate the roles played in these matters by the late Detective Inspector Bill Cullen ( formerly of Queanbeyan and Goulburn ), Detective-Sergeant George Slade, of the NSW Bureau of Criminal Intelligence, Superintendent Reg Martin, Superintendent Herbert Talarico, Executive Chief Superintendent Gallagher, Assistant Commissioner Bob Shepherd and former Commissioner Cec Abbott.

Messrs Cullen, Slade, Shepherd and Abbott were mentioned in evidence during the Bungendore committal hearing in February and March. Cullen — who died in Gosford last month — was the senior detective at Queanbeyan at the time of Operation Seville. He was closely involved with NSW Bureau of Criminal Intelligence officers taking part in the operation.

An NCA officer, Detective-Sergeant Robin Small, told the Queanbeyan Local Court that Commissioner Abbott, Assistant Commissioner Shepherd, and Detective Sergeant Slade were aware of the operation. Sergeant Slade, in fact, prepared a lengthy report on Operation Seville and this was tendered during the hearing. He is currently facing criminal charges unrelated to Operation Seville:



Canberra Times (ACT : 1926 – 1995),

Wednesday 26 March 1969, page 19



Defence calls for Crown evidence

An application was made by defence counsel before Mr Justice Kerr and an ACT Supreme Court jury yesterday for the transcript of evidence of a Crown witness who could not be found to be tendered to the court.

The application was made in the case in which Nikola Talanga, 41, diamond driller, of Gibbes Street, Newtown, NSW, is standing trial on a charge of having feloniously and maliciously murdered Sofia Malovic in Canberra on September 28, 1968.

Mr K. Enderby, instructed by Mr M. Somes, of Gallen, Kelly and Dainer, for Talanga, said he consented to the transcript of evidence given before Canberra Petty Sessions by Antoni Eres being tendered. The transcript should be tendered by the Crown, as the evidence of Eres was not unimportant to the defence.

The Senior Crown Prosecutor, Mr A. R. Watson, said he declined to tender the transcript. Before February 24 the defence had been told that the Crown would not be calling Eres at the trial because he could not be found.

Even if Eres were present the Crown would not call him because his evidence did not advance the case any further.

Mr Justice Kerr said he would not make any observations at that stage, but suggested that if Mr Enderby wished to take the request further he could do so when the Crown case ended.

Earlier, Mr Watson tendered a transcript of evidence given before Canberra Petty Sessions by George Mestitz, who was absent from the Commonwealth.

Mr Enderby consented to the tender of this transcript, which was read out in court.

Rama Hadzic, of Minerva Road, Wedderburn, NSW, said that on the night of September 29 Talanga had come to his house.

When asked by Talanga if he had heard about what had happened in Canberra, he had said he had heard about it over the radio.

When he asked Talanga why he had done it, he had replied that he did not know. Talanga had said he had found Sofia after eight months.

Talanga had said that when he asked her to come out of the shop and talk things over she had refused.

Talanga alleged that Sofia had insulted him, so he had shot her.

Hadzic said that while Talanga was staying with him he (Talanga) could not sleep. He would wake up and jump out of bed and cry. He had threatened to kill himself.

Two wounds in head

Detective Constable John Radalj ( 09566 ), of the NSW Police, said that on October 6 he was with a group of ACT and NSW police who surrounded a house at Wedderburn.

After a gunshot had been heard from the house Detective Sergeant Herbert Talarico had rushed inside.

Constable Radalj said he also had entered the house and had seen Talanga lying on the floor, with two wounds in the head.

Constable Radalj said he had asked Talanga in the Yugoslav language if he had shot and killed Sofia Malovie in Canberra on September 28.

Talanga had replied, “Yes”.

When asked why, Talanga had said, “Because she did not want me”.

Detective Sergeant M. J. Robinson, of the Canberra CIB, said that Talanga had been extradited to Canberra from Sydney on November 7, 1968.

When being brought back to Canberra by car, after being warned by Detective Constable H. G. Harrison, of the Canberra CIB, Talanga had said that he had shot the woman a couple of times inside the shop and shot her again outside.

He had wanted her to come back and live with him. When she spat on him he had become angry and shot her.

Detective Sergeant Colin Victor Letherbarrow ( # 6383 ), of the scientific investigation bureau, Sydney, said that an examination of six fired cartridges revealed that they had been discharged from the rifle produced in court. A cartridge case recovered from a house at Wedderburn had been discharged from the same rifle.

The hearing will be continue today.


Newcastle Morning Herald and Miners’ Advocate (NSW : 1876 – 1954),

Saturday 15 October 1949, page 3

£100 Fine, 10 Years’ Ban On Car Licence

SYDNEY, Friday. A man was fined £100 and had his licence suspended for 10 years by Mr. Meagher, S.M., in North Sydney Court to-day for driving a car while under the influence of liquor.

The man, Alfred de Visne Cornwell, 48, insurance broker, of Pacific Highway, Pymble, had prior driving convictions.

He pleaded “Not guilty” to driving under the influence at Gordon on July 1.

Constable Herbert Talarico said he followed Cornwell along the Pacific Highway at Killara. His car was swaying from side to side. Cornwell’s speech was thick and he smelt strongly of liquor.

Frederick Harold Morris, building contractor, of Kippax-street, Sydney, who was in the car with Cornwell, said Cornwell was not in a condition to drive.

Morris said he (Morris) drove the car until stopped near Gordon Council Chambers by Constable Talarico.

Mr. Meagher said he was satisfied that Constable Talarico was an honest witness.

“Cornwell, according to his own story, was badly under the influence of liquor,” the magistrate added.


Daily News (Perth, WA : 1882 – 1955),

Thursday 17 July 1947, page 9



SYDNEY, Thurs — A 20-year-old probationary constable, with only two months’ service, knocked out with the butt of his revolver a man who allegedly threatened him with an iron bar.

The constable, Herbert Talarico, saw a man acting suspiciously near the Eastwood post office about 2 a.m. yesterday.

Realising he had been seen, the man allegedly threw a stone on the roof of the post office to warn his mate inside and made off.

When Constable Talarico over took the man, he turned and brandished a piece of iron.

But Constable Talarico knocked him out with the butt of his revolver.

Police searched the Eastwood post office, and found a charge of gelignite plugged in the safe key hole, ready to be blown.

Then followed dashes to suburbs by the wireless patrol, culminating at 8 a.m. with a visit to a shop in Prince’s Highway, Tempe.

Police alleged that as they entered the shop a man thrust his hand, in his pocket, but was over powered and handcuffed. A fully-loaded revolver, was allegedly found in his pocket.

As a result of the night’s work, detectives believe they have put an end to a cycle of safe-blowing in the northern suburbs.


Daily Telegraph (Sydney, NSW : 1931 – 1954),

Sunday 23 July 1944, page 6



Mr. Barry Gulliver says he finds singing in Grand Opera uplifting after his rather sordid work.

In the daytime Mr. Gulliver works for the Taxation Department, investigating charges of dishonesty made in anonymous letters.

At night Mr. Gulliver is one of the chorus of demons in “Faust,” at the Conservatorium.

The demons sing hideous songs which drive Marguerita to madness and to killing her child.

We met Mr. Gulliver back stage at the Conservatorium this week during the opening scene of “Faust,” in which Mephistopheles tempts Faust.

Mr. Gulliver told us about his work as an investigator of anonymous letters, which the Federal Treasurer (Mr. Chifley) considers desirable.

He said that a lot of the people he had to interview in the course of his duties were rude. Some made use of the word “pimp.” Others used stronger language than this.

At this point there was a blinding flash as Mephistopheles leaped on to the stage. As Faust, the aged philosopher, was selling his immortal soul to Mephistopheles, Mr. Gulliver continued his narrative.

MR- GULLIVER said you would be surprised at the amount of deception and dishonesty that goes on in New South Wales.

Just then Mr. Curt Prerauer, the chorus-master, walked past to conduct the chorus of angels In his inner pocket Mr. Prerauer carries during the performance numerous watches and much jewellery and money which members of the chorus of angels leave with him so they won’t be stolen.

Mr. Gulliver says that when he was investigating some anonymous taxation letters at Wingham, near Taree, in 1938, a young woman was impressed with his voice and advised him to take up singing. He did so, and soon he was singing at church concerts at Wingham. “Opera is a wholesome change from investigating dishonesty,” he said.

At this stage Mephistopheles drew from a stage barrel water which the audience was led to believe was wine. Mr. Gulliver says that you meet interesting and ambitious people in opera companies.

ONE of the people Mr. Gulliver has met in the chorus is Mr. Herbert Talarico, Wahroonga barber.

Mr. Talarico‘s singing name is Lawrence Morrell.

Mr. Talarico is interested in the career of Mr. Joseph Schepsi, Melbourne’s singing barber, who charges £4/4/ for the Schepsi permanent wave and £4/4/ for a seat at his concerts.

Mr. Talarico charges only 1/6 for haircuts and receives the award rate of £5/7/ a week for his work in the opera chorus.

He says Schepsi must be a very interesting man. He would like to have a talk with him.


* Story behind any Nickname:


Nothing further, than what is recorded above, is known about this person at the time of publication and further information and photos would be appreciated.



18 December 2023




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