Having experienced something similar (to a much smaller degree) I just want to say how impressed I was with Jane’s honestly and maturity at only 23 years old. Jane if you are reading this- you seem like an incredible person who deserves happiness and peace. This is only a short chapter of your life. I’m rooting for you!
Jane is a victim.
Who the hell approved the Jane interview? Greg, your heavy breathing only made the whole debacle of an interview with Jane more creepy. It also felt strange and voyeuristic when Greg started asking Jane (so poised and mature by comparison) about the sexual abuse she suffered. And yes, Greg, it was abuse! Jane is a victim. She was groomed and then psychologically, emotionally, and sexually abused by the literal psycho you’ve been profiling in your podcast.
Before the Jane interview, I was really intrigued by this story. That’s the only reason you’re getting 2 stars.
Excellent reporting on this terrible person. I really appreciate the respect that the narrator gave to the people he talked to and about.
NONE of this was Jane’s fault
Had to stop listening when Greg Bearup totally botched and mishandled the interview with Jane. Hammish was a MASTER manipulator and willing to engage in statutory rape and pedophila to defraud people, yet Greg says to Jane “ya know we all make mistakes when we are 17, it’s just that your mistakes were amplified by this guy.” No, Jane is not to blame here. But Greg did a great job retraumatizing and victim-blaming her. Almost as wonderful of a job as the United States Senate Judiciary Committee did with Dr. Ford and Brett Kavanaugh. What a disappointment!
Go watch Abducted in Plain Sight, or read about how Robert Berchtold kidnapped his 12-year-old neighbor, Jan Broberg, *twice* and had sexual relations with her until she was 16 because they had to “stick to the story,” and then tell me that Jane is to blame for Hammish Watson’s treachery, duplicity, callousness, and psychopathy.
[[TO JANE! This is not your fault! You were psychologically abused and manipulated by a psychopath before you’re prefrontal cortex had even fully developed. (It’s fully developed around 25.) Sending you all the love and good vibes, if you read this Jane!!]]
Good yarn about an overlooked and underreported destructive crime. There are thousands of Hamish’s out there. Would like more detail about how Hamish groomed his victims with definitions of gas lighting, etc from the psych. Thought it was great that the interviewer let the victims tell the story. Disagree with other reviewers that “Jane” was victimized by interviewer. It’s obvious to me that she requested the interview and it’s a part of the healing process to be a part of this. Jane-you made no choice. You were not complicit. Hamish is a psychopath that enjoyed the game of sleeping with you in front of his wife. It was his way of gaslighting her and making her think she was crazy. Psychopaths enjoy the manipulation-stealing whatever people hold dear and ruining them. Money, self worth, dreams. Shame on the police and shame on Hamish’s family for not talking about him and giving the victims any insight into this psychopath!
5 stars for Jane, 1 for interviewer
I was disturbed listening to the interview with Jane with how callous the interviewer was. You may have been interviewing a very young “adult,” she was telling a story of a child who was perpetrated on by an adult and you blamed her and highlighted her pain. Most adults with decades of experience fell prey to this man and this was a 16/17 year old being placed in impossible double binds. While I understand her feelings of responsibility to her family, it is painful thinking there wasn’t someone there to protect her when she needed it most. I hope she is finding her path and self worth. This interview allowed her to tell her story, but you, the interviewer, rubbed in her pain. That was cruel and for what....
Good with a caveat
A good podcast telling an interesting story, but the host’s interview with Jane felt exploitative and icky.
Not impressed with the last “bonus” episode and the interview with Jane. Jane was a child who was groomed & I feel the host failed to fully grasp that. Hamish is fully to blame for the situation with Jane and any other explanation or perspective is misguided.
Very interesting podcast, but I expected more episodes.
Remarkable young woman
Those who are crying foul over this series are not paying attention. He does not call it a “relationship” until Jane first calls it a “relationship.” He does not call it an “affair” until Jane first calls it an “affair.” It is Jane, not the journalist, who conceded that she knowingly and conscientiously entered into an activity that she knew was wrong, and that she was complicit in the subsequent duplicity (her words, not his). Those who would shelter Jane under a “victim” status deny her own freedom to tell her own story, and completely devalue her expressions of regret and sorrow. Her story is touching and heartfelt and sincere, compelling because she is so sorry for what she did. The magnitude of Jack’s and Beck’s forgiveness—and the depth of her sorrow— is lost when Jane is denied the dignity of expressing her own regret. Her present healing is not found in her ability to extract herself from the wrongdoing, but in acknowledging her small part in it. She is a remarkable young woman and should be treated accordingly. Those who would shift all blame from her, unwittingly suggest that there is nothing she could have done differently to avoid the outcome. In other words, they force her into the role of a powerless victim, the very thing they think they are protecting her from. This series is just outstanding journalism.
Irresponsible and infuriating
The host’s treatment of the discussion of Jane’s experience with Hammish with Beck, Jack, and her grandparents was irresponsible, but his interview with her was absolutely infuriating. To allow these people to discuss their point of view without giving the audience the proper context of understanding it was abuse, not an affair, is bad journalism and a dangerous way to frame the manipulation of a teenage girl. His interview with Jane herself took it to the point of complete lack of journalistic integrity, basic decency, or a fundamental understanding of abuse and victimization. “We all make mistakes at 17” does not describe her experience of being groomed and violated by a man 30 years her senior. This host has no idea what he is doing and should never be allowed to handle a story of such sensitive nature again.
The Bernie Madoff of Australia
The story as told by the victims.
Jane is a victim in every sense of the word - and instead is treated as an adult who made a bad decision. This kind of portrayal of child sexual abuse is not only inaccurate but dangerous. I now have doubt if Australian legislation and policy in child sexual abuse cases is on par with international standards because of the gross misrepresentation of the victim in this podcast.
Starts strong, but wanes over time.
Loved the first few episodes, but it got much more repetitive and boring over time. Additional episodes didn’t seem to add to the story, but rather reinforce existing themes, to the point that it felt like beating a dead horse. Ended up giving up in episode 8, but wish I would’ve stopped a few sooner.
Hamish is no Gatsby. And Jane was sexually assaulted.
This is a superb series; I also loved The Teacher’s Pet (and sincerely hope that monster Chris Dawson finally sees justice). But PLEASE STOP BLAMING UNDERAGE VICTIMS OF SEXUAL ASSAULT FOR THE ABUSE. Jane (like Joanne in the Teacher’s Pet) was absolutely set upon by a predator, and I wish that the host would understand that she is a victim that Hamish abused in the most vile manner. Stop asking her questions like she just made choices about a “bad relationship” etc — Jane was the victim of a crime, not a woman who made bad decisions in an adult relationship. FFS. I really hope Bec and Jack can understand that Jane was ABUSED.
At some point Hamish is compared to our (as in we Yanks) literary figure Jay Gatsby. Yeah, they both told lies about their histories — that’s where the similarity ends. Gatsby was a true romantic who fought for everything he had in life to win back Daisy (he actually served honorably in WWI — he’s not lying about that detail) and EARNED his money (even though the market and all of that speculation was very Wild West at that time). He wasn’t stealing money from vulnerable grandparents or preying sexually on a teenager while claiming to be her father. Ugh. Hamish is a disgusting predator. He’s no Gatsby — only in his own mind.
Really love this podcast and teacher’s pet, but someone needs to be accountable in this case for calling June’s relationship with Hamish an affair. Jane began going to the dreaded household as a freshman in high school. How is being groomed by a trusted father figure an ‘affair’? A journalist ought to know the definition of a word. Hamish abused Jane, who was morally his own daughter.
As a lot of other reviews have pointed out I was consistently uncomfortable with the treatment of Jane, Hamish’s most vulnerable victim, and the host’s comments during her interview. For one, labeling the manipulation of a child at the hands of an adult man as an “affair” rather than grooming is extremely irresponsible. Everyone besides the host seemed to understand this. Jane showed a truly admirable amount of strength and maturity during her interview, but was constantly undercut by the host. It felt like he was trying his hardest to guilt her. “We all make mistakes when we’re 17.” Really?! That was appalling. Major kudos to her for dealing with those useless and unprofessional interjections. Irresponsible treatment of victims quickly turns true crime reporting into exploitation.
Figured it would be good and I was right!
I listened to The Teacher’s Pet and thought it was really well done, so when I saw that this podcast is also from The Australian, I knew it would be good. And it is!
I loved this Podcast, binged it all in a day. In reading the reviews many where being hypercritical of the portrayal of Jane. Worried that she was be cast in a negative light, however this podcast is clearly about Hamish's victims and she is one. The way the Australian presents it is engaging, he shows how people were feeling when everything was happened. (Ie the “affair”)
By the last episode we’ve caught up and fully know Jane was being groomed and a victim.
Great podcast, great journalism.
Who the hell is hamish
Had to stop listening....keep up the good work
Overall a good listen
I enjoyed this podcast. My only problem with the reporting was the treatment and characterization of Jane. Several times the host referred to her “affair” with Hamish. As a vulnerable 16 or 17 year old girl, she was a child targeted and victimized by Hamish. It’s not an affair between adults, it’s child sexual victimization. The host telling Jane we all “f**k up” as teenagers implies that she was to blame or had any fault in the situation. A similar characterization showed up in The Australian’s Teacher’s Pet podcast where a vulnerable underage girl was seduced and victimized and then painted as having an “affair” with an adult man. To me this was disappointing.
Very well done!!!
This was the best story telling podcast I have ever heard. 👍🏿
Amazing with One Caveat
This podcast is incredibly well done, and it’s first-class journalism and storytelling. The only reason I’m giving it 4 stars is because of Jane’s portrayal as having had an affair with Hamish. She was 16 when he began grooming her for her grandparents’ money. Words like victimized, targeted, stalked, or even raped would be more accurate.
I hope “Jane” reads this and knows that she is so strong to be working so hard to be able to forgive herself, and know that our past mistakes do not define us, and she is helping countless people, including myself, to tell her story. I have nothing but admiration for this young woman, and you make us all more brave. This podcast was an excellent insight into a depraved mind, and hopefully makes us all a bit more wise in our financial dealings.
I truly hope “Jane” understands that absolutely no blame can be attached to her. She was a child. A child who no one protected. She was groomed & manipulated by a grown man. A grown man who many wealthy adults trusted. She was lied to, raped and took advantage of when her brain and body were still developing. The woman who she lived with should have had her move out or move to her grandparents home when she knew her husband was taking advantage of Jane. Her own grandparents should have been more involved. Perhaps child protective services should have been more involved. Again there is absolutely NO blame on Jane. Jane I hope you live a beautiful life moving forward. I hope you know this happened to you and you did not cause this. I hope you find a man who is kind and loving to be your partner and you both do amazing things together in this world. I think you will be an inspiration to many young women who have survived abuse. Blessings to you.
Such a devastating story for so many people. “Jane’s” bonus interview was particularly heart breaking. Such a young age to be effected by such and evil man, in no way her fault, but the devastating guilt she must feel is palpable. I wish there had been more interviews like the bonus episode where we could get a lore in depth feeling for the individuals involved, what they went through and are still going through today. Overall, a great podcast!
Who the hell is Hamish - Bonus episode Jane
This is a fantastic podcast. I have thought son throughout but the amount of respect shown to “Jane” with the publishing of this bonus episode is astounding. She is an incredibly strong and beautiful person and while it may not impact her directly I feel that she should her from everyone how much she is not at fault and I wish I could give her any strength I have to help her forgive herself. Thank you!
I was groomed too
Hearing “Jane” was like listening to my own thoughts and feelings finally articulated in ways I never could. Hope that manipulative bastard suffers.
Send my love to Jane
I too was groomed by a psychopath at a young age. I still have trouble talking about it at times. Thank you for your bravery, I’m sorry you feel at all responsible. You were a child and adults weren’t able to support you when you needed it most.
Jane is not to blame
Please be more explicit in saying that she is a victim, that she was a CHILD, that she shouldn’t be blamed for anything that monster did. And that older men frequently prey on vulnerable young girls, this is a societal pattern, not a one-off.
Lets distinguish the difference between an affair and victimization please
Great listen, however I hope that we can all distinguish the difference between an “affair” and what Jane went through. She was a child who was groomed and victimized. I noticed during this pod and The Teachers Pet that both Jane and Joanne Curtis are referred to improperly (mistress, girlfriend, etc), but they should not be blamed for what happened to them. They were children who were made to feel special by predators and then abused and exploited. Love The Australian. Confident that the network will phase out the improper language.
Super creepy on the Jane interview
This was a very compelling podcast until the “Jane” bonus interview. The interviewer spoke over Jane, attempted to put words in her mouth, and spoke to her as if she was a perpetrator rather than a victim. In his most creepy move, he can not stop trying to extract details about sex from her. It wasn’t an affair or a relationship, she was a child.
Also, come on, Princeton and Harvard are two different schools and neither is in NYC. I don’t know where they visited, but just using all of those interchangeably is ridiculous and poor journalism.
I have experience with a psychopath. Looking back I can see the manipulation, the lies, the conflict and destruction he created. I respect Jane’s willingness to “own” her decisions, but she was a child. Being sexually abused is abuse. Jane has no reason to accept the blame for that. She was groomed by an evil monster. I hope Jane can forgive herself. I hope she can find a good counselor to help her find healing and peace.
One of my favorites of all time
Sometimes they interview people over the phone so audio can be a little funky but definitely worth it. Amazing podcast that shows what a charismatic sociopath can do to trusting and loving people.
Can’t get it to work
Does anyone else have serious problems getting the podcasts from The Australian to play? I absolutely loved The Teacher’s Pet but had constant issues getting the podcast to play. Same is happening with this one. Any ideas?
Jane you have so much potential
You language, your grace and self-awareness are far beyond your 23 years. You have so much potential, don’t drop your dreams - go back to school if you want. The world is still yours
Jane Breaks My Heart
This is such a well done podcast. My heart breaks for Jane. She is so brave for telling her story an admirable for taking the responsibility that lies with her. She is too hard on herself. Forgive yourself, go on and live the life you deserve.
Poor Jane and Hamish the living nightmare: great podcast.
I think the podcast was completely wonderful. I do hope that the maker of the podcast can relay to the woman known as Jane that she isn’t a bad person, that her interview shows her complete remorse and that even though I am no one of consequence I feel she is redeemed and shouldn’t even need to be redeemed because all she wanted was to be someone successful who had dreams and who had no ability to understand the consequence of her actions. A 16 year old has no sense of gravity! I also think Jack sounds like a good good good good good person. This I can say from experience: the terrible things that men put you through when you’re young are a blessing. I had terrible relationships when I was very young. And you really learn permanent lessons young. Just like how you can more easily pick up math or learn a Foreign language: As a young person you have the ability to really be damaged in an unbiased way so those scars are permanent but they really do make you stronger. I was an attorney for older people who were divorcing and thought to myself often “how fortunate I am to have learned when I was young how to see a man or woman for who they are because I couldn’t imagine going through that kind of deception at an advanced age”. So Jane. Find peace!!!! You deserve peace. You are a better person now. Hamish the monster didn’t take away your life. He burned a scar into your being and you won’t approach hot iron like that ever again because of it. Be well. I’m sorry you had to endure this pain. And thank you podcaster / the Australian for re-educating all of us that this happens. 20 years ago. Now. Forever. Con men are everywhere. They deserve to be isolated with the horror of their loneliness. Only themselves to lie to. Rot in jail Hamish!
I don’t know what or if there is a statue of limitations but I hope after Jane’s interview the Police interview a go after Hamish for the sexual abuse he caused Jane to endure
Had me up until we start to hear from the millionaire in Canada who lost his savings to Hamish. He describes how Mercedes or Porsche or whatever MADE some rare car just for him and then I just couldn’t care less about the Hamish saga.
So good. Art of the scam.
This is a superb series that sucked me in so fast my head is still spinning. Still spinning with the art of the high finance con that makes real characters like fictional characters like Sneaky Pete (or non fictional characters like Marc Dreier) look like Cub Scouts.
I wish there were more of these podcast stories. Great reporting and investigative reporting by our Australian colleagues.
This will certainly be made into a screenplay, you can’t make these shenanigans, skullduggery, and antics up. Just. Can’t. Stop. Listening.
This is a fairly good true-crime narrative that’s worth a listen if you can get past the mid-range whisper-voice of the presenter. My review is missing a star for this reason and because some of the audio from primary sources (on their cell phones) has low quality sound. If you are listening while doing anything with minor background sound (I often listen to podcasts while cleaning the house or driving) you cannot easily pick up what’s being said even with the volume up high. I have excellent hearing and no problem with accents...this was hard to hear! Aside from that, there is a real missed opportunity when podcast producers fail to use sound to enhance the landscape of the story which would have been a much richer one if an effort had been made.
I’m sorry but I can’t stand podcast that have extraneous noise like loud swallows, sniffing, sucking of teeth. It is amplified in my head phones.
Really, really well done
I’ve listened to many true crime pods.
This is really interesting, smart , quick paced , and a pleasant narrator.
I will look for more podcasts by this group .
Thank you , Kevin
Great podcast, engaging. A must listen.
Like all others that fell to Hamish’s con, I have become spellbound by his story. The Australian has done a perfect job in letting me know who the hell Hamish is. I still don’t know and I hope to find out.
How did he do this??
This is another good podcast from The Australian. Your curiosity about this mysterious man about the second or third interview with his victims. How does someone have friendships and even intimate relationships with people and hurt them like he did. How did he drain them of their finances and be able to keep these relationships, only to be given more? He had a master plan in the end. He could win people over with his trust almost immediately and gain enough to stay around even well past a year without a strong distrust on their side. Sure, they questioned him but they didn’t want to insult him when demanding their money back because after all, he was kind, he took care of them, they loved him. How was even able to keep everyone straight? It was explained that he would scam one person and also scam another who wasn’t always related. No annoying music you’re having to forward through, just straight interviews and explanations of Hamish’s history and his made up life stories. I do wish there were more to the stories but I suppose there’s not much else to it except he could get people to trust them, stick around and scam them.
Great story! Bad audio
I am really compelled by this story but I wish the audio was better in some of the interviews or that they’d be recreated if they aren’t good enough quality. It’s grating.