Derryn Hinch

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Derryn Hinch
Derryn Hinch.jpg
Hinch at Australian Commercial Radio Awards, in October 2012
Born Derryn Nigel Hinch
(1944-02-09) 9 February 1944 (age 72)
New Plymouth, New Zealand
Other names The Human Headline[1]
Occupation Radio and television presenter

Derryn Nigel Hinch (born 9 February 1944) is a New Zealand-born Australian media personality, best known for his work on Melbourne radio and television.

He was the host of 3AW's Drive radio show until December 2012 and he is currently a National Public Affairs commentator for the Seven Network on Sunday Night, Today Tonight and Sunrise. He has also been a police reporter, foreign correspondent, newspaper editor, television show host, actor (usually playing as himself) novelist and vintner. In January 2014, Hinch was found in contempt of court and served a 50-day prison sentence.

In October 2015, Hinch announced his intention to stand for a Senate seat as head of the Derryn Hinch Justice Party at the next Federal election. Hinch will remain as host of his weekly program Hinch Live until the election campaign, in a decision supported by Sky News Live.[3]


Hinch hosted Beauty and the Beast on the Seven Network between 1982 and 1983. From 1987 to 1991, Hinch hosted his own current affairs show on the Seven Network titled Hinch, which later moved to Network Ten where it ran from 1992–1994. In 1994, Hinch joined the Nine Network and hosted The Midday Show for a year. He has also appeared on Dancing with the Stars, Underbelly and Millionaire Hot Seat as a guest playing for charity[4]

On radio, Hinch has hosted 3AW's Drivetime radio show since 2003 he has often been absent from the program due to health and house arrest and has also formerly hosted the top rating morning program at the station. In August 2012 it was announced Hinch's contract would not be renewed by 3AW, and he would be replaced by financial commentator Tom Elliott.[5]

However, in September 2012, Hinch re-joined the Seven Network as National Public affairs commentator, though there were rumours Hinch might make a comeback (although this never eventuated)[6][7] Starting January 2015, Hinch will host a twice weekly news opinion program Hinch Live over the weekend on Sky News Australia.[8]


Hinch began his career at the age of 15 with the Taranaki Herald in New Plymouth, New Zealand in 1960. In 1963, he came to Australia on the MV Wanganella and joined The Sun in Sydney. By 1966 he had become a foreign correspondent for the Fairfax organisation, and in New York became bureau chief in 1972. He remained in the United States for eleven years. Hinch returned to Sydney and was editor of The Sun in 1976-1977



In September 2008, Hinch had a four-week run as The Criminologist (narrator) in the Australian tour of The Rocky Horror Show.[9] He also appeared as himself, in a minor role, in the film The Wog Boy with Nick Giannopoulos, in 2000, and made cameo appearances on Fast Forward.


In 2006, Hinch lost weight and his health declined.[10][11] On 4 March 2007, he revealed on 60 Minutes he had been suffering from advanced cirrhosis of the liver, and that a tumour had been found on his liver. On 27 April 2007, Hinch returned to hospital for additional scans.[12][13][14] On 4 August 2007, Hinch revealed he had inoperable liver cancer.[15]

On 20 September 2010, Hinch confirmed the liver cancer diagnosis, and said that he expected to undergo surgery to remove a third of his liver, and that this would take him off-air for several weeks. Doctors gave him a 60 per cent chance of surviving a further five years.[16] On 4 November 2010, Hinch told his listeners that his doctors had told him that without a liver transplant, his maximum survival would be 12 months.[17]

On 6 July 2011, Hinch underwent liver transplant surgery at the Austin Hospital in Melbourne.[18]


Michael Glennon[edit]

In 1985, Hinch found that Michael Glennon, who had previously been convicted on a charge of indecent assault with a minor, was to be tried on new charges while still running a youth camp. Hinch, who was concerned that parents were unknowingly sending their children to Glennon's camp, first appealed privately to then Victorian Premier John Cain and the then-Attorney General, as well as the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Australia, but in Hinch's words, they "washed their hands" of the situation.[19] Subsequently Hinch publicly identified Glennon during his trial on the third set of charges, in spite of the strong sub judice rule under Australian jurisprudence. This delayed the trial while Hinch was tried on contempt of court charges; Hinch was fined $10,000 and imprisoned for 12 days.[19] This was the first time anyone had gone to prison on a prior restraint issue in Australia.[20] Hinch appealed his case as far as the High Court of Australia, which affirmed his conviction. In its ruling the Court held that despite Hinch's motivation of warning the public that Glennon continued to hold a position in a youth organisation, it was sufficient to inform them of the current charges against him, and that the information about his prior conviction was prejudicial under Australian law.[21] Hinch calls the incident "the thing I'm most proud of in my life."[19]

Mick Gatto's call[edit]

On 24 June 2008, while Hinch was discussing the celebrity status of underworld crime figures during his drive program, Mick Gatto phoned in and had a brief confrontation with Hinch, ending with a death threat.[22]

John Laws[edit]

On 30 July 2007, John Laws and Hinch attended the 40 Years of Radio Legends, after which Hinch complained the "event had been turned into a tribute to Laws", among other comments which caused ill feeling between the two.[23]

On 5 December 2007, while on holiday, Hinch was abused verbally with obscenities by John Laws in unprovoked circumstances while dining at lunch with 2CH personality Bob Rogers in a restaurant at the Finger Wharf in Woolloomooloo, Sydney.[24][25]

Sexual relationship with underage girl[edit]

In his 2004 book, The Fall and Rise of Derryn Hinch, and in a radio editorial in March 2005, Hinch admitted to having sex with a 15-year-old female when he was in his early thirties, although he states he "thought she was about 25". Following his on-air admission, Herald Sun journalist Andrew Bolt called for his prosecution.[26] In 2013 Hinch wrote that after 30 years the woman had contacted him and said he was wrong about her age. She said she was born in 1961 and they met shortly after he joined 3AW in 1979. That made her 17-18 at the time of the liaison.[27]

Criminal convictions[edit]

1987 conviction and imprisonment[edit]

Hinch served 12 days in prison and was fined $15,000 in 1987 for contempt of court after he publicly revealed paedophile Roman Catholic priest Michael Charles Glennon's prior conviction while a trial was still pending.[28][29]

2011 conviction and home detention[edit]

In June 2011 he was convicted of breaching suppression orders against the names of two sex offenders, and was subsequently sentenced to five months home detention.[30]

2014 conviction and imprisonment[edit]

In October 2013 Hinch was found guilty of contempt of court for breaching a suppression order by revealing details of Jill Meagher's killer, Adrian Ernest Bayley’s criminal history. The judge gave Hinch 90 days to pay the fine, or else face 50 days in prison.[31] On 16 January 2014, one day prior to the expiration of the 90 day period, Hinch advised that he would not pay the fine 'on principle'. He was imprisoned on 17 January 2014.[32] On 7 March 2014, he was released from prison after 50 days, having served his full sentence. He was greeted by his partner Natasha Chadwick, other friends and a substantial media contingent.[28][33]

Personal life[edit]

Hinch has been married five times.[2] His first marriage was to Lana Wells, an editor. His second marriage was to Eve Carpenter, a flight attendant.[34] He then married Australian actress Jacki Weaver twice. They first got married in 1983 and were married for 13 years before divorcing in 1996 only to get remarried in 1997 but were only married a year before divorcing again in 1998.[35][36] He married Chanel Hayton in February 2006 and they separated in late 2012.[2]

His former partner is Natasha Chadwick, a former detective sergeant with the NSW police force and more recently a freelance writer who also works in production with the Seven Network.[33] They have since split up.[37] Hinch identifies as an atheist.[38]

Books by Hinch[edit]

Cover of The Fall and Rise of Derryn Hinch


  1. ^ Kerri-Anne Mesner (17 January 2015). "The Human Headline has a mission, but is he doing right?". Morning Bulletin. Retrieved 27 April 2015. 
  2. ^ a b c d e Human Headline splits with wife | The Age 20 February 2013. Retrieved 28 May 2013
  3. ^ Perry, Kevin (13 October 2015). "Derryn Hinch to remain on-air for now, as political campaign commences". Decider TV. Archived from the original on 14 October 2015. Retrieved 14 October 2015. 
  4. ^ "Hot Seat: Celebrity Week". TV Tonight. 10 August 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  5. ^ "Derryn Hinch sacked from 3AW drive radio show". The Australian. 27 August 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  6. ^ "Rumour mill: Hinch back on Seven?". TV Tonight. 10 September 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  7. ^ "Derryn Hinch signs with Seven Network". TV Tonight. 21 September 2012. Retrieved 22 September 2012. 
  8. ^ Knox, David (15 December 2014). "Derryn Hinch joins SKY News". TV Tonight. Retrieved 2 January 2015. 
  9. ^ Oh boy – Derryn Hinch has signed on for Rocky Horror | The Age 6 August 2008. Retrieved 28 May 2013
  10. ^,10117,18767737-29277,00.html.
  11. ^,20281,18667947-5001022,00.html.
  12. ^ "Drunks All Round". Retrieved 2 June 2008. 
  13. ^ "Health Detour". Retrieved 2 June 2008. 
  14. ^ "The Home Straight". Retrieved 2 June 2008. 
  15. ^ Edmonds, Mike: Derryn Hinch admits inoperable liver tumor, Herald Sun, 7 August 2007.
  16. ^ "Hinch announces he has cancer on air". The Spy Report (Media Spy). 20 September 2010. Retrieved 20 September 2010. 
  17. ^ "Hinch has year to live without transplant – The West Australian". Retrieved 4 November 2010. 
  18. ^ Levy, Megan: Hinch gets liver, transplant under way, The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 July 2011.
  19. ^ a b c "That's life for a radio survivor". The Fifth Estate: Media Analysis by RMIT Journalism. 15 June 2004. Archived from the original on 19 August 2006. Retrieved 11 December 2006. 
  20. ^ "Under the hammer". The Fifth Estate: Media Analysis by RMIT Journalism. 8 August 2004. Archived from the original on 19 August 2006. Retrieved 11 December 2006. 
  21. ^ The Law Reform Commission of Western Australia (March 2002). "Discussion Paper on Contempt by Publication" (PDF). Australasian Legal Information Institute. Retrieved 11 December 2006. 
  22. ^ Jamie Duncan (23 June 2008). "Gatto wishes 'maggot' Hinch dead". 
  23. ^ "Laws calls Hinch a jerk". Herald Sun. 1 August 2007. 
  24. ^ Connolly, Fiona (6 December 2007). "Laws didn't call me an 'armpit transplant' – Hinch". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2 June 2008. 
  25. ^ "Laws launches tirade at Hinch and Rogers". The Sydney Morning Herald. 6 December 2007. Retrieved 2 June 2008. 
  26. ^ [1].
  27. ^ Hinch, Derryn. "A Personal Postscript". Retrieved 19 November 2013. 
  28. ^ a b "Emotional Derryn Hinch released from jail over contempt". The Australian. News Ltd. 7 March 2014. Retrieved 7 March 2014. 
  29. ^ "Hinch & Macquarie Broadcasting Holdings Ltd v Attorney-General (Vic)". AustLII. AustLII. 2 December 1987. Retrieved 8 March 2014. 
  30. ^ "Derryn Hinch guilty of breaches, not sorry". The Sydney Morning Herald. 3 June 2011. 
  31. ^ Portelli, Emily (18 October 2013). "Derryn Hinch fined $100,000 for breaching suppression order". Herald Sun. News Ltd. Retrieved 18 January 2014. 
  32. ^ Anderson, Paul (17 January 2014). "Broadcaster Derryn Hinch to serve 50 days in jail after refusing to pay $100,000 fine". Herald Sun. News Ltd. Retrieved 18 January 2014. 
  33. ^ a b Hinch Released. Interview with Staff reporter. 7 March 2014. Seven News Melbourne. Seven Network. Melbourne. 
  34. ^ Stritof, Sheri & Bob. "The Five Marriages of Jacki Weaver". Marriage at Retrieved 4 December 2013. 
  35. ^ Casamento, Jo. "Weaver gives interview to ex-husband Hinch". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 2 December 2013. 
  36. ^ Jacki Weaver, Time Out Sydney, 1 December 2010.
  37. ^
  38. ^ "The right to be racist?". Sunrise. Retrieved 25 March 2014. 

External links[edit]