By ABC Radio

An investigative podcast hosted by ABC journalist Rachael Brown, Trace examines the fractures in Australia's criminal justice system, and the decades-long ripples they have caused.


Maria James inquest finding

A Victorian Coroner has failed to name a killer in the 1980 cold case of Maria James. Her sons are devasted. But there's still hope, in leads yet to be chased by police.
01/04/22·18m 34s

S1 | The Inquest

The new coronial inquest into the murder of Maria James has wrapped up. Will the Coroner be able to name her killer? And of the police exhibits that haven't disappeared, what DNA testing can be done? This episode nears us closer to the end of the James brothers' 41-year-fight for answers for their mum.
03/11/21·1h 5m

S1 | Breakthrough in Maria James cold case

The discovery of a police exhibit - thought to be missing for around three decades - could finally help unmask the killer in the 1980 cold case of Maria James.
12/08/21·26m 45s

S2 BONUS — The Price

The Royal Commission has released its final report into defence lawyer turned police informer Nicola Gobbo.
16/12/20·40m 53s

S2 08 | End game

We reveal the story of Nicola Gobbo's audacious bid to return to Australia.
21/09/20·42m 22s

S2 07 | Reckoning

Everything unravels, for Nicola Gobbo and Victoria Police. Their secret is out.
14/09/20·40m 35s

S2 06 | Whatever it takes

Nicola hits rock bottom, but Victoria Police wants her to take on a new role ... as a witness.
07/09/20·40m 58s

S2 05 | Glittering prize

Nicola wants to be the best source ever, and she leads police to the biggest target of all: the mafia. Her double life is getting riskier, but she can't stop. This episode charts an addiction and a crash.
31/08/20·39m 37s

S2 04 | Rubicon

Nicola crosses the point of no return and becomes a police informer. She'll represent clients, while passing on the underworld's secrets to Victoria Police.
24/08/20·37m 47s

S2 03 | The darkest night

A drug house burglary smells of police corruption and a police informer is executed.
17/08/20·39m 39s

S2 02 | One of the crew

As the gangland war explodes, both police and criminals start questioning Nicola's allegiances. Where do her loyalties lie?
10/08/20·37m 37s

S2 01 | Nicola

We meet Nicola Gobbo in a secret location, in hiding, now that her double life as a police informer is out, and she begins telling us her full story.
03/08/20·35m 43s

INTRODUCING Trace season 2 - The Informer

Lawyer Nicola Gobbo represented some of Australia's most dangerous criminals, all the while secretly working as a police informer. Why did she do it?
27/07/20·5m 13s

S1 07 | Hope

More than a year on from their plea for a new coronial inquest, the James brothers get a decision. Will they finally get answers to the burning questions they've carried for 38 years about the murder of their mother? And what about those items Trace has been given that might have DNA on them? Can they identify the killer? We take them to one of the world's best DNA labs, with some of the most sensitive equipment, to find out.
03/12/18·36m 57s

S1 06 | Limbo

New evidence has been found. So can police test it for a trace of the killer? What happened to crucial documents? And a new confession. It is nearly a year since the James brothers applied for a new coronial inquest into their mum's murder, but the case hangs in legal limbo.
12/06/18·29m 12s

S1 05 | Wait

The fall-out from major revelations in the Maria James cold-case continue, as her sons make a desperate plea to the Coroner.
06/09/17·24m 18s

S1 04 | DNA

There's a major break in the case, as Trace uncovers a police bungle in the murder of Maria James. But it only serves to throw up more questions than answers, as the James brothers continue their desperate search for justice.
12/07/17·34m 0s

S1 03 | Sins

A second person of interest emerges within the church. Rachael Brown investigates their past and discovers a dark and disturbing history.
05/07/17·27m 54s

BONUS | How your leads are helping the investigation

Since Trace was first released, the ABC has received over 50 emails from the community with leads and tip offs. In this bonus update, reporter Rachael Brown follows up with two women who got in touch to say they saw men acting suspiciously around Maria's bookshop at the time of her murder. Send us your tips:
04/07/17·7m 45s

S1 02 | Confessions

Rachael Brown's investigation into the death of Maria James turns to the local Church, and Rachael tracks down a new witness who saw someone covered in blood around the time of Maria's death.
27/06/17·35m 40s

S1 01 | Bookshop murder

On a winter morning in June 1980, Maria James turned to her son Mark and looked him in the eyes. "If anything happens to me, look after your brother." Later that day she was found stabbed to death at the back of her suburban Melbourne bookshop.
20/06/17·30m 23s

S1 | Preview

June, 1980, suburban Melbourne: Mother of two Maria James is stabbed to death in the back of her bookshop. Her killer has never been found. Was it a scorned lover? A random stranger? Or was Maria's murder tied up in the sins of the Catholic Church?
16/06/17·1m 55s
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