Whether you are a devotee of the genre or simply someone who is true crime curious, podcasts are a great way to discover shocking, sad and unsolved stories from around the world.
Hugely popular, the podcast format allows the listener to really immerse themselves in a case, providing levels of detail and background beyond what is usually published in the press.
But with so many podcasts out there how do you know which ones are worth a listen?
To help you decide The Press and Journal’s crime and courts team have put together this list of recommendations of true crime audio offerings.
Best new true crime podcasts
Vanished: The Arlene Fraser Murder
Arlene Fraser was a mum of two, a daughter, a sister, a friend.
After years of abuse at the hands of her husband, she mustered all her strength and courage to separate from him. She was going to college, started having a social life and began planning a bright future for her and her children.
Then on April 28, 1998, she vanished. She was never seen again.
This year marked the 25th anniversary of this tragic case and to mark it, investigative reporter Dale Haslam spoke to her friends and family, and those who eventually brought her killer to justice.
Hunting Mr X
Fans of the Netflix series Narcos won’t want to miss this new podcast from The Press and Journal.
Across five episodes you’ll find out about how Chisholm – aka Mr X – built his drug empire and would go on to become one of the UK’s most wanted men.
The podcast features the first ever interview with customs boss Graham Dick – the man who spent four years chasing Chisholm and his gang across the world.
There is also insight from our own Impact investigations reporter Dale Haslam, who spent two years researching Chisholm’s gang.
Can I tell you a secret?
Did you enjoy last year’s catfish podcast sensation Sweet Bobby? If so, Can I tell you a secret? is a podcast pick for you.
From the emergence of social media to the age of the influencer, this podcast documents one man’s mission to mess with minds online and details just how long it took the law to catch up with him.
A slight tendency to editorialise is softened by context, with the voices of a generation who grew up curating online identities helping to explain how interference in the ether spilled messily into their everyday existence.
Overall this podcast poses and attempts to answer some important questions for the post-internet age, and serves as a cautionary tale to all those tempted to overshare, or indeed, impersonate others, online.
A man in prison for murder claims he is innocent.
A man on the outside confesses to the crime.
Seems like something that might be simply solved, but nothing is ever that easy.
Bone Valley tells the story of the brutal murder of 18-year-old Michelle Schofield and the conviction of her husband Leo.
When Michelle was found with 26 stab wounds, investigative eyes turned quickly towards the man with whom she reportedly shared a ‘volatile’ relationship.
Three years later Leo was convicted of her murder and jailed. Case closed.
Until investigative journalist and proven righter of judicial wrongs, Gilbert King, receives a tip-off from a trusted source that the wrong man is behind bars.
Listen as another man confesses to the killing and watch as campaigners work to overturn Leo’s murder conviction.
A fascinating and frustrating tale of the complicated nature of unpicking investigations that were thought to be all sewn up.
The Sunshine Place
The Sunshine Places charts the rise and fall of Synanon, from a promising new approach to drug addiction to a controlling and dangerous cult.
Told by those who experienced it, the Sunshine Place exposes the darker side of this once shining example of rehabilitation.
Hear from the children who became collateral damage in one man’s selfish co-opting of the fight against addiction and the devotees who slowly became disillusioned with the Synanon “game”.
Join the ‘dope fiends’ and the ‘squares’ as they watched their utopia implode in front of their eyes.
If you are anything less than discerning with your social media adds you might already be aware just how ready some people are to latch on to even the most absurd conspiracy theories.
But even knowing this is unlikely to cushion the shock of the tale that Hoaxed has to tell.
A finger-pointing witch trial for the internet age, this terrifying tale uncovers the far reaching tendrils of the conspiracy community and the unstoppable butterfly effect of one individual’s personally motivated misdeeds.
Hell and Gone (Season 4)
When strong-willed student Ebby Steppach got in with the wrong crowd things went terribly wrong.
After allegedly falling prey to sexual assault, Ebby made a veiled reference to the crime on her social media – the post was the last that she would make.
Following a distressing call to her brother, Ebby was never heard from again.
This chilling podcast from dogged veteran investigator Catherine Townsend looks at what happened to Ebby Steppach, and explores who might be responsible for her disappearance and why.
Crossing the Line
From the man that brought us Paper Ghosts comes this new podcast series.
Telling a series of standalone stories, M William Phelps draws on his crime reporting role and podcast prowess to plunge listeners into an immersive investigative audio experience.
The self-reflection in Phelp’s approach helps to offset the often intrusive nature of the True Crime genre – something with which the presenter is familiar having lost a family member to murder.
A thoughtful and thought-provoking offering in the true crime arena.
The Detective’s Dilemma
Lovers of the true crime genre will be greeted by a familiar voice when they tune in to the Detective’s Dilemma.
The anonymous Australian is one of the most prominent presenters in this niche as host of the acclaimed Casefile podcast and now he brings you a spin-off series, looking more closely at an episode that has haunted him since he recorded it.
When Sian O’Callaghan was reported missing after a night out in Swindon, Detective Steve Fulcher found himself investigating a major case.
When he brings in his suspect the man offers up some unexpected information, but following it up might see Steve breaking some rules – and that is the Detective’s Dilemma.
The Teacher’s Trial
If you were hooked by the twists and turns of The Teacher’s Pet (just one of the podcasts recommended in our list of 11 must-listen true crime podcasts to get you started) then this follow-up is not to be missed.
Join the team from The Australian as they follow the trial of Chris Dawson, finally facing justice four decades after the mysterious disappearance of his wife in 1982.
Hear about the testimony of the so-called “Teacher’s Pet” herself as she tells of being groomed by Dawson. Learn how she took the place of the missing wife in his home, raising her children and wearing her clothes, then discover exactly what a judge (the case was considered to high profile for a jury) thought of the evidence.
Growing up in an Italian family in mid-20th Century Brooklyn, Dominick Montiglio tried hard to escape what he saw as his likely destiny – running first to the military and then to the West Coast.
But with a family on the way the lure of the money and his uncle’s influence eventually pulled him back, placing him at the heart of the five families – until he decides to do the unthinkable.
Hear Dominick’s own take on the mob’s Machiavellian machinations in recordings taken by a friend, as well as a more objective interpretation from host Celia Aniskovich.
For fans of traditional true crime, Cold Cases offers up some in-depth explorations of lesser-known crimes that initially went, and in some cases remain, unsolved.
From a field full of bodies in South Texas to a muddy riverbank in rural Michigan, the Cold Cases team unearth the untold stories of the victims who didn’t live to tell their tales.
Atmospheric, in-depth and unsettling, the Cold Cases featured in this podcast showcase the depravity of the predators and the determination of those who pursue them, even across the decades.