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'I'm the f---ing godmother': Roberta Williams bailed after colourful hearing

Roberta Williams allegedly yelled ‘‘I’m the f---ing godmother’’ during a brutal and sustained attack on a video producer behind the filming of her planned reality TV show, a court has been told.

The former wife of gangland killer Carl Williams appeared at Melbourne Magistrates Court on Wednesday afternoon facing a string of charges including making threats to kill, causing serious injury and false imprisonment.

Roberta Williams leaves court after being granted bail on a string of charges.

Roberta Williams leaves court after being granted bail on a string of charges.Credit:Eddie Jim

After an incident-filled hearing she was released on bail after agreeing to pay a $10,000 surety, report daily to police and avoid international airports.

Three hours after she was granted bail, Ms Williams left court on foot surrounded by her legal team, who walked her down the street.


She made no comment when asked about the circumstances of her arrest.

The Age last month revealed she was being investigated over an alleged extortion and kidnapping plot following claims that she imprisoned and assaulted Ryan Naumenko, the producer of her proposed television show.

Mr Naumenko alleged Ms Williams, 50, and a group of men attacked him in a Collingwood building and demanded money.

The court heard that the attack occurred after Mr Naumenko was allegedly told to meet the group at Cloakroom Media in Collingwood.

When he arrived with his children and mother, they felt uncomfortable and were driven home.

When he returned he was greeted by Ms Williams – and three male co-accused – before doors were locked behind him.

The first co-accused – Daniel Desilva – allegedly said ‘‘this is great’’ and toasted a beer with Mr Naumenko before saying: ‘‘Righto, Ryan, you’re f---ed, it’s all over. It’s too late you’re dead.’’

The other two men – Jake Sexton and James Harrison – then allegedly punched Mr Naumenko to the face before attacking him while he was on the ground.

Ms Williams then allegedly yelled: ‘‘Kill the c--t, he has no money, we have what we want.’’

It’s alleged Mr Harrison then pulled out a gun before Ms Williams grabbed a power cord and wrapped it around Mr Naumenko’s neck, choking him.

Roberta Williams was led away in handcuffs from her Strathmore home on Wednesday morning. 

Roberta Williams was led away in handcuffs from her Strathmore home on Wednesday morning. Credit:Nine News

Detective Senior Constable Lisa Hollingsworth told the court that Ms Williams then allegedly yelled: ‘‘You’re lucky I didn’t kill your children, you dog,’’ and: ‘‘If you don’t get me money tonight, I’ll go straight to the police and tell them you raped [Ms Williams' daughter] Dhakota.’’

Detective Senior Constable Hollingsworth said Ms Williams then claimed she had both police and the media paid off and would have Mr Naumenko killed in prison if he reported the incident.

Mr Naumenko’s arms were then tied as blood flowed from his mouth.

Alleged victim Ryan Naumenko.

Alleged victim Ryan Naumenko.Credit:Seven News

Shortly after, demands were allegedly made on Mr Naumenko for him to transfer large sums of money to the group.

Ms Williams then allegedly said: ‘‘I’m the f---ing godmother, c--t’’.

Mr Naumenko was then forced into a black van before being dumped. He made his way home to his mother before reporting the allegations to police on July 11.

The court heard Mr Desilva was arrested last month at Melbourne Airport, attempting to fly to Europe.

The court heard Ms Williams damaged chairs in a police interview room on Wednesday and was unco-operative with investigators.

Seated in the dock, Ms Williams yelled out: "She was being tormented about her husband being murdered ... that's what was happening."

As Ms Williams' lawyer, Theo Alexander, approached her and urged her to be quiet, magistrate Bob Kumar warned he would remand her if there was another outburst.

Police opposed her bail application over concerns Ms Williams posed an unacceptable risk to the public, had previously shown disregard for the law and would try to threaten, assault or intimidate the alleged victim to seek retribution.

The detective said the alleged assault and extortion was "extreme in nature", and that police feared Ms Williams had the criminal associates who could provide false travel documents and money for her to flee if she was granted bail.

Ms Williams smiled and shook her head at the suggestion, and then covered her face with her hands.

Dr Alexander, in cross-examining Detective Senior Constable Hollingsworth, said of the allegations against his client: "This is all just fabricated rubbish."

The alleged victim had a long criminal history, the court heard, including convictions for dishonesty and fraud offences.

Dr Alexander said Ms Williams intended to fight the allegations, and there was a paucity of corroborating evidence. He said the prosecution case was not strong, based on the alleged victim's credibility.

He acknowledged Ms Williams didn't co-operate with police because they were "jeering at her about her dead husband and she just went a bit crazy in the interview. She accepts that."

Ms Williams lived at her Strathmore home, the court heard, with her husband, daughter Dhakota and her eight-year-old son, who has autism and cannot speak.

She was her son's primary carer, Dr Alexander said, and her absence "would be devastating to him right now".

"He is at a loss to operate without her," Dr Alexander said.

Ms Williams began crying when the court was told about her son.

Mr Kumar found Ms Williams' circumstances around her son and the credibility concerns about the alleged victim were enough to be deemed compelling reasons, and granted bail.

Her bail conditions mean she must reside at her home between the hours of 10pm and 6am unless needing to take her son – who the court heard had undergone recent surgery, with fears he may have a brain tumour – for medical treatment.

She’s also unable to contact the prosecution witnesses despite her lawyer telling the court Mr Harrison is “like her son”.

She will return to court on October 8.

Ms Williams was arrested at her home in Melbourne's north-west on Wednesday morning. Nine News footage showed her being led away in handcuffs.

Police confirmed the fraud and extortion squad raided five properties in Craigieburn, Greensborough and Strathmore on Wednesday as part of an ongoing investigation into the alleged kidnapping.

"This investigation centres on allegations of false imprisonment and extortion with threats to kill," a police spokeswoman said.

Another of Ms Williams' associates was charged last month with kidnapping, extortion and threats to kill.

The 36-year-old Princes Hill man was released on bail and will appear in Melbourne Magistrates Court in October.

During the police summary Ms Williams shook her head and mouthed the words ‘‘wow’’ and ‘‘oh my god’’ while shaking her head.

Mr Naumenko alleged the group forced him at gunpoint to ask relatives to transfer $17,000 to a bank account and then continued to demand further payments.

Ms Williams had set up a GoFundMe page to raise $50,000 for the reality television project. The page has raised only $865 so far. A promotional video for the fundraiser has been disabled.

"Wait to see the real me. Get to know me before you judge me. See the person I am then judge me. Then I will take your comments your criticism and won’t even complain," Ms Williams said in the video.

Erin covers crime for The Age. Most recently she was a police reporter at the Geelong Advertiser.

Rachel is a breaking news reporter for The Age.

Adam Cooper joined The Age in 2011 after a decade with AAP. Email or tweet Adam with your news tips.

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