In 1969 Bernie Matthews was convicted of armed robbery and sentenced to 10 years. A serial escapee, authorities soon classified Matthews as an intractable prisoner and he was transferred to Grafton. There, life was a routine series of bashings and solitary confinement, and as the brutality of Grafton became a political scandal, Matthews found himself transferred to a fresh hell in 1975 - Katingal Special Security Unit inside Australia's first super-max prison. Katingal replaced Grafton's bashings with sensory deprivation and psychological control. One of the longest serving and surviving Katingal inmates, Matthews did not see daylight for two years, eight months. 'Intractable' is not only a shocking story of what it's like to do time but also a history of one of the great political scandals of the '70s from a unique perspective.
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