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Tuesday May 29 17:47 AEST

I could have been chief: Roger Rogerson

Monday Mar 13 18:06 AEDT

Notorious former detective Roger Rogerson says police should not be reluctant to fire their guns and believes too many officers nowadays wrongly blame courts for freeing suspects.

Free again himself after the latest of two jail terms on corruption charges, the highly decorated officer sacked from the NSW force in 1986 also believes he could have become commissioner.

He served three years jail in the early 1990s for conspiring to pervert the course of justice and was released last month after his latest term of 12 months for lying to the Police Integrity Commission.

Rogerson, who regrets ever becoming a detective, has conceded he was no white knight, saying he believes a group of police were still out to get him.

He is convinced he could have become commissioner if only he had opted for an office job.

"The regret is this: that I should never have been a detective," he told ABC Radio in an interview.

"I should have looked at some of these people who I saw go on to become deputy commissioners and assistant commissioners.

"I should have got a job at headquarters and then bummed my way through there and got a nice easy job, and that's the way to do it. That's the way to get to the top."

Rogerson, born in 1941, also revealed he has suffered from depression and had a stroke, but contrary to popular belief he does not have Parkinson's Disease.

"I'll produce a doctor's certificate to prove I haven't got Parkinson's Disease," he said.

Rogerson said he never had any qualms about using his firearm in the line of duty and believed police should be ready to use their weapons to apprehend suspects.

"You were given a gun to protect yourself and use it to effect the arrest of a fleeing felon," he said.

"That's what it's for, maybe they should use it more often."

Rogerson, who insists he no longer has ties to criminals, says he always got a kick out of catching crooks by extracting information from informants, often over a drink.

"The thrill to me was catching them, chasing them, investigating them and catching them. I never complained if a crook beat us at court," he said.

"I get rather annoyed at the way the police carry on now.

"They blame magistrates for allowing people out on bail and then when you read into the story you find there's not much evidence there anyhow."

Rogerson, who is still facing a corruption charge in South Australia, said he believed his house was bugged, after authorities recorded 38,000 hours of his phone conversations, leading to his most recent conviction.

"I learnt years ago it's no use checking your house for bugs," Rogerson said.

"My wife and myself, if we want to talk about something in private, in strict privacy, we leave our house, we walk across the road where we have bushland and we talk in the bush."

He also accused former police commissioner Jack Avery of leading a campaign against him.

Rogerson said jailed former HIH executive Rodney Adler was ostracised in Kirkconnell prison, where the two were inmates.

"Not mistreated physically but I think there was a bit of undercurrent there about maybe for what he was there for," he said.

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