Explosive new claims over horror murder
Explosive new claims have emerged about why aspiring gangster Jamie Gao was really murdered inside Storage Unit 803 and how he was lured to his death.
Young drug dealer Gao was shot twice inside the unit in the western Sydney suburb of Padstow in May 2014. His body was wrapped in a tarpaulin and found floating off Cronulla days later.
Crooked cops Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara are both serving life sentences for the murder, part of a botched drug deal over 3kg of methamphetamine.
But Channel 9's Australian Crime Stories' The Dark Side reveals that Gao maybe have been doomed long before he entered the storage unit.
Daily Telegraph crime writer Mark Morri told the program that the Chinese triad members who supplied Gao with the drugs to purportedly sell to Rogerson and McNamara might have "sanctioned" the murder.
"Roger's not an idiot," Mr Morri said, "you don't just shoot a guy and steal $700,000 worth of drugs from the Chinese triads.
Saying he had discussed the case with detectives, Morri said "it was not a crazy thing to believe they sanction" the murder, and that "Roger had the green light to kill Gao".
The potential motive was that Gao may have been a "snitch " for the Australian Crime Commission, which he was known to have visited in the lead-up to his murder, it was reported.
Two young Asian men were caught on CCTV delivering the drugs to Gao before he entered the storage unit with McNamara and is then joined by Rogerson.
Days later, again caught on CCTV at Sydney International Airport, the men leave for Hong Kong.
"They're out of the country, to get rid of the connections," former detective Michael Drury said.
The Dark Side examines just how Rogerson and McNamara lured Gao to his murder inside the storage unit and reveals some discrepancies in the case and who actually planned the operation.
Each killer has claimed innocence and blamed the other, but the program shows how both were intimately involved in the slaying, although it was McNamara who hatched the plot.
In fact McNamara, who told his daughters Rogerson forced him into it, brought one of his daughter's surfboard covers along to the unit to wrap Jamie Gao's body in once he had been dealt with.
Jamie Gao's body was found floating off Cronulla in May 2014, trussed up in several layers covered in a blue tarpaulin.
Former NSW assistant police commissioner Clive Small tells program host Adam Shand he believes Roger was too experienced to have not known a body was at risk of floating to shore if dumped at sea and not either cut open or weighed down.
"Roger Rogerson will tell you how you dispose of bodies, you don't just put it over the side because it will rise up," he said.
"After murdering Gao, they took the boat out to sea. Then, the next morning, that's exactly what happened.
"The whole time, McNamara said Rogerson was with him threatening him with a gun.
"However, Rogerson maintained, he stayed on dry land.
"If Rogerson had been there when the body was thrown overboard, he would have known that a very heavy weight had to be put on the body."
The Daily Telegraph's Mark Morri told the program that Rogerson's long time claim that after joining the NSW Police force he had been "lured to the dark side … is a load of crap".
"He is the darkness," Morri said, "I think Roger was born on the dark side.
"And he saw the police force as the way that he could use that for what he wanted to do."
Morri, who had formed a sort of a friendship with Rogerson when the disgraced ex-detective was touring NSW with a travelling show about cops and crims, also revealed that Rogerson now wanted him dead.
Following Rogerson's conviction along with McNamara for the Gao murder, Morri had written a series of stories about unsolved murders in NSW connected to Rogerson.
Some of the murders were also connected to Rogerson's one time partner in crime, convicted murderer and heroin dealer Arthur Stanley "Neddy" Smith.
Smith and Rogerson were in cahoots while Rogerson was still a detective, back in the 1980s.
Morri said he "didn't have this elated feeling" when his stories were published.
"It was a bit of an empty feeling, because I had got to like him. Not hugely, but … I liked him.
Morri turned up at court for the men's sentencing and said Rogerson spotted him in the courtroom from the dock and his reaction meant he had obviously read the stories.
"He's seen me and he's just gone red, and stood up, and he literally went.." Morri held up his hand and mimicked an angrily pointed finger.
"And … if you've seen a Roger look, it's not … I was a bit shaken.
"It was that he would like to see me dead."
Originally published as Explosive new claims over horror murder