The well known Sydney-based crime reporter Les Kennedy has died.
Kennedy, aged 53, died yesterday (10 August) after a long battle with cancer.
Born and raised in Darwin, Kennedy worked for both News Limited and Fairfax over the course of his 33-year career, cultivating a contact list of policemen, criminals and underworld figures that were the envy of other crime reporters.
Over the course of his career, Kennedy covered many famous cases, including the Kerry Whelan murder (with new in information in that case providing the copy for his last story in the Sun Herald a few days ago), the Victor Chang murder in Mosman in 1991 and the Ivan Milat backpacker murders.
In addition to covering numerous crimes, Kennedy teamed up with his journalistic colleague Mark Whittaker to write three books, including Granny Killer, the story of John Glover, published in 1992.
"Les loved cops and many, many cops love Les - they both love him because he took the time to know them, to see the world through their eyes and to stay the distance, when the truth always comes out. Les Kennedy, the policeman's police reporter," Scott Weber, the president of the Police Association of NSW told The Sydney Morning Herald.
Last night, a pre-arranged benefit for Les was held in Sydney, where a number of items were auctioned to raise money for his family. This included barrister Winston Terracini SC stumping up legal representation worth $250,000 for anyone accused of murder, and a Kings Cross Crimes and Passion Walking Tour, with accommodation at a Potts Point Hotel.
Kennedy is survived by his parents, former partners, four children and two grandchildren