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poacher turned gamekeeper

A person whose job or role has completely changed, from one extreme to another. Primarily heard in UK. The notorious computer hacker who once stole money from unsuspecting Internet users now helps the government catch other hackers—it's a strange case of poacher turned gamekeeper.
See also: gamekeeper, poacher, turn

an old poacher makes the best gamekeeper

People who have a lot of experience in a criminal activity are the ones best suited to trying to protect against that activity later in life. A: "I heard that computer company is planning on hiring renowned hackers to run their security infrastructure." B: "Well, old poachers make the best gamekeepers." A: "The new sheriff used to be a notorious thief?" B: "Hey, you know what they say—an old poacher makes the best gamekeeper."
See also: gamekeeper, make, old, poacher

old poacher makes the best gamekeeper

Prov. The best person to guard something is someone who knows all about how to steal it, so he or she can anticipate what thieves might do. We should hire the computer hacker to design computer security systems. An old poacher makes the best gamekeeper.
See also: gamekeeper, make, old, poacher

poacher turned gamekeeper

If you describe someone as poacher turned gamekeeper, you mean that they have changed their job or opinion and now have authority over the same sort of people that they were themselves before. She returns as poacher turned gamekeeper. Previously a union leader, she now works for the Committee of Vice-Chancellors and Principals. Gary Mason, boxing's poacher turned gamekeeper, will make his managerial debut tomorrow. Note: You can also say that someone is gamekeeper turned poacher, when someone who was in authority changes to a situation where they need to be controlled by others. He used to manage properties for other landlords. Now the gamekeeper turned poacher has to find occupiers for his own building. Note: A poacher is someone who illegally hunts animals such as deer, pheasant or salmon. A gamekeeper is someone employed by a landowner to look after these animals, which are known as game.
See also: gamekeeper, poacher, turn

poacher turned gamekeeper

someone who now protects the interests which they previously attacked.
See also: gamekeeper, poacher, turn

poacher turned ˈgamekeeper

(British English) a person who has changed from one situation or attitude to the opposite one, especially somebody who used to oppose people in authority but is now in a position of authority: He used to represent an oil company but now works for an environmental organization; a real case of the poacher turned gamekeeper.
See also: gamekeeper, poacher, turn
References in periodicals archive ?
Gamekeepers are legally allowed to snare and kill foxes but not "non-target" animals such as badgers.
Mr McMorn sought a judicial review of a 2014 decision, backed by the National Gamekeepers Organisation.
The online messages were spotted by gamekeepers at Millden Estate in Angus, who had noticed a bird fitting the lost eagle's description.
When I started as a gamekeeper we used to carry heavy bags of grit for miles across the moors but now we have off-road vehicles to do the job for us," he said.
He's now 86 and recalls working on the Farnley estate with part-time gamekeeper Ben Woodhouse in the 1940s and 50s.
Being a gamekeeper is to live life close to the land.
A TOP moorland gamekeeper - born in the industrial smoke of Middlesbrough - has won a national rural award.
Gamekeeper Calum Murray, 18, was with friends in his home when his gun went off and fatally injured 16-year-old Sophie Taylor.
A MIDLAND teenage gamekeeper who clubbed badgers to death and killed two buzzards has been was given a six-month suspended jail sentence.
Last night husband Andrew Dixon, a 45-year-old gamekeeper, was under arrest on suspicion of shooting his love rival through the driver's side window, leaving him fighting for his life.
A GAMEKEEPER was nearly pounds 700 out of pocket after a banned pesticide was found in his vehicle.
GANGSTER movie filmmaker Guy Ritchie (right) is going to direct a film version of the comic series The Gamekeeper.
Gamekeeper, winner of this race a year ago, and Topacio, who is locally owned, represent Pat Hughes.