Gangland widow Roberta Williams has avoided jail and community service despite bringing in goons to bash and extort a television producer.
On Friday, the ex-wife of dead Melbourne gangster Carl Williams was convicted and sentenced in the County Court of Victoria to a two-year community corrections order.
But she avoided having to lift a finger to help the community.
Williams pleaded guilty in May to charges of blackmail and recklessly causing injury to her one-time TV producer Ryan Naumenko, who tuned in to her sentence via videolink to watch his tormentor walk free.
In sentencing Williams on Friday, County Court of Victoria Judge Fiona Todd accepted that she would struggle to perform any community work because of recent surgery to her hands.
Roberta Williams leaves court after getting news she won’t have to lift an injured finger to help the community
Roberta Williams continues to cry poor – despite looking anything but in recent images posted to social media
She further accepted the convicted drug dealer had her busted hands full with her autistic child Giuseppe, whom she had referred to in her plea to escape both jail time and community service.
The ongoing impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on Victorian jails ensured Williams and of her co-offenders escaped jail sentences, Judge Todd said.
Jake Sexton, 27, had agreed to help out his mate John Harrison when he became embroiled in the savage assault on Naumenko.
The court head Harrison had been recruited by Williams to stand over Naumenko.
On Friday, Sexton was convicted and sentenced to a two-year community corrections order, but ordered to perform 150 hours of community work.
He had pleaded guilty to intentionally causing injury to Naumenko.
A third co-offender, Hassam Al Zhwainy, received a 12-month community corrections order – without conviction – for his limited role in the standover, but was also fined $800 and told to perform 60-hours of community work.
Roberta and daughter Dhakota Williams arrive at court in Melbourne on Friday
Ryan Naumenko, then 36, went public with the allegations against Williams in 2019. He showed off his injuries to a television reporter
Jake Sexton (pictured on Friday) agreed to turn up at a warehouse where Roberta Williams wanted her reality television producer stood over
Naumenko had made the mistake of contacting Williams with an idea to film a reality television series about her life.
But when he failed to cough-up payment to Williams’ mate Daniel De Silva, who owned a video production company in Collingwood, Williams hatched a plan to get the money back.
The court heard Naumenko was lured to Mr De Silva’s warehouse on July 9, 2019 after refusing to pay $14,300 he owed him for work already done on the planned reality series.
Naumenko had falsely claimed he had raised $50,000 via GoFundMe to finance the ‘Mob Wives’ styled reality show.
Williams was right to be concerned about the television producer, who is a convicted fraudster and former jailbird himself.
Earlier, the court heard Williams was determined to get Naumenko before he got them.
‘If one of the boys give him an open hand slap and push him to get your money it’s no big deal,’ she told De Silva leading up to the assault.
The pair then devised a plan to lure Naumenko to De Silva’s media studio to extract the money he owed.
The court heard Sexton agreed to attend the studio to help out mate John Harrison, who had been recruited by Williams to stand over Naumenko.
Upon Naumenko’s mum and kids leaving the studio, De Silva told him he was ‘f**ked’.
‘It’s all over now’. I want money now, Roberta wants money now otherwise you’re f**ked,’ De Silva told Naumenko.
A 2007 file photo of convicted murderer Carl Williams as he sat in the dock at the Melbourne County Court. It would be the last public photo ever taken of him before his 2010 murder
When the terrified producer pledged to organise the money, De Silva told him that time had past.
‘It’s too late, you’re dead,’ he told him.
The court heard Sexton belted Naumenko across the face, which sparked the feral Williams into action.
‘Kill the c**t, he has no money,’ Williams shrieked.
Naumenko was was punched and kicked intermittently over the next three hours, with Sexton threatening to break his hands and telling him he had a mate who would ‘burn him’.
Tied to a chair, Williams demanded he transfer money and told him he was lucky she had not killed his mother and children.
In a victim impact statement read to the court, Naumenko, who was 36 at the time and still living with his mum, claimed Williams’ mates had left him with a deformed head.
‘Since the night of the attack my physical look has changed quite dramatically,’ he said.
‘My face is no longer asymmetric and I have spent hours and hours over the past few years looking at my uneven face in the mirror and trying to come to grips with my current appearance. ‘
Ryan Naumenko was beaten, bashed and threatened with a gun after getting into a doomed business agreement with Roberta Williams
Naumenko had rated himself as somewhat of a ladies man back in the day, claiming to have worked as a music producer with well-known Australian artists Thirsty Merc and Illy.
Naumenko had bragged online in 2010 that he was ‘quickly becoming one of Australia’s most popular talent management companies’.
A PR website stated: ‘Ryan Naumenko, once associated with the wrong side of the law, has done a complete back flip and is fast becoming one of the ‘go to guys’ of the Australian music industry when it comes to talent management’.
Sexton’s barrister James McQuillan, QC, said Sexton was not complicit in the unwarranted demands made upon Naumenko by his co-offenders.
‘Moreover, there is no evidence of Mr Sexton receiving any financial reward, or any promise of financial reward, as a result of his limited role in the overall offending,’ he stated.
While Williams was initially accused of choking Naumenko with an electrical cord during the attack, she pleaded guilty to the assault charge on the basis she took no part in any physical attack on him after securing a deal with the Office of Public Prosecutions director Kerri Judd, QC.
Jake Sexton leaves the County Court of Victoria in Melbourne in October 2019.
Roberta Williams outside the County Court of Victoria in September 2019
Blackmail in Victoria carries a maximum jail sentence of 15 years, while the assault charge tops out at five.
Williams had claimed she was too sick and too busy with motherly duties to perform community work.
While Williams survived Melbourne’s infamous gangland war that claimed the lives of 36 underworld figures, the now 52-year old claims she still fears she and her family could be killed at any moment.
During her preliminary hearing in the magistrates’ court, Williams had been shown vomiting into a paper bag before launching into a rage, lifting up a police desk and smashing chairs.
Extraordinary video showing Williams berating police before trashing the interview room was released by prosecutors at the time.
For half-an-hour Williams had bombarded police with a host of conspiracy theories before she was sick in a brown paper bag.
The video was captured inside a Melbourne West police station interview room just weeks after Williams allegedly threatened to kill the television producer.
Roberta Williams vomits into a paper bag while waiting to be assessed by a police doctor after her 2019 arrest
Roberta Williams after being arrested over a bungled blackmail attempt on a tv producer