Saturday, March 5, 2016

Rogerson's ex-lawyer: Gao's accused killer was a kid in with big boys

Accused murderer Glen McNamara was a “child in with the big boys” according to co-accused­ Roger Rogerson’s former solicitor, a court has heard.
Jessica McNamara, Mr McNamara’s daughter, told the NSW Supreme Court she met solicitor Paul Kenny at a coffee shop about a week after her ­father and Mr Rogerson were ­arrested for the murder of university student Jamie Gao.
Mr Kenny, who the jury ­earlier heard had threatened Mr McNamara’s wife and daughter, told Ms McNamara her father was “stupid”.
“He kept saying that my dad was stupid, he was a child in with the big boys and he didn’t know what he was getting into and he was an idiot,” she said.
In earlier testimony, Ms McNamara said that Mr Kenny — who no longer represents Mr Rogerson — had told her to be afraid of Mr Rogerson.
On the “very traumatic” morning at the cafe, Mr Kenny showed Ms McNamara, her sister and her mother the police fact sheet summarising the allegations against Mr McNamara and Mr Rogerson.
Ms McNamara also told the jury she discussed seeing an Asian man with long hair and a large neck tattoo in Cronulla on her way to work.
“To be frank, tall Asian guys with tattoos on the neck don’t hang around Cronulla mall, espec­ially in the morning,” she told Mr Rogerson’s barrister, George Thomas.
Mr McNamara and Mr Rogerson have pleaded not guilty to murdering Gao in a southwest Sydney storage shed on May 20, 2014, and taking the 2.78kg of ice he had brought with him.
Ms McNamara is due to continue­ giving evidence on Tuesday.
The trial, before judge Geoffrey Bellew, continues.

Thursday, March 3, 2016

Murder accused Glen McNamara was an "idiot" who was "mixing with the big boys" and unaware of what he was getting into, Roger Rogerson's solicitor allegedly said after they were arrested.

Jessica McNamara leaves after giving evidence at the NSW Supreme Court in Sydney on Tuesday, March. 1, 2016. (AAP)

Jessica McNamara leaves after giving evidence at the NSW Supreme Court in Sydney on Tuesday, March. 1, 2016. (AAP)

At the pair's trial, McNamara's daughter Jessica was asked about a June 2014 meeting with Rogerson's then-solicitor Paul Kenny, which allegedly took place shortly after Rogerson and McNamara were charged with Jamie Gao's murder.

"He (Mr Kenny) just kept saying that my dad was stupid and he was a child mixing with the big boys and he didn't know what he was getting into and he was an idiot," Ms McNamara told the NSW Supreme Court on Friday.

She said the meeting took place on June 1, 2014, at Bass & Flinders Cafe in Cronulla, after Mr Kenny called her the previous evening.

Her mother and sister were also present.

Mr Kenny "waved around" a police facts sheet which summarised the allegations against McNamara and Rogerson, Ms McNamara said, under cross examination by Rogerson's barrister George Thomas.

It was a "very traumatic" morning, and the family described the meeting to McNamara when they saw him the next day.

"We told him that it was upsetting and what he (Mr Kenny) had said about him being a child playing with the big boys," she said.

The court also heard Ms McNamara later discussed with Mr Kenny threats relating to a person she saw in a mall at Cronulla.

Ms McNamara described how a long-haired Asian man with a tattoo on his neck had looked at her strangely as she walked to catch the train to work.

It happened within a week of her father being arrested.

"To be frank, a tall, Asian guy with tattoos on the neck (doesn't) generally hang around Cronulla mall, especially in the morning," she told the court.

"It felt suspicious to me that this had happened after my father had been arrested."

Rogerson and McNamara have pleaded not guilty to murdering Mr Gao on May 20, 2014.

The crown case is the two men shot the alleged drug dealer before stuffing his body into a surfboard bag and dumping it at sea.

The jury was sent home before lunch on Friday and told not to return on Monday, to allow for legal debate.


Glen McNamara's daughter threatened by former solicitor of co-accused murderer Roger Rogerson, court hears

A former solicitor for accused murderer Roger Rogerson, threatened the daughter of his client's co-accused, Glen McNamara, the NSW Supreme court has heard.

On her third day in the witness box, Jessica McNamara described a visit by Rogerson's then solicitor Paul Kenny, to her Cronulla home.

Former police officers McNamara and Rogerson have both pleaded not guilty to the murder of student Jamie Gao in a Padstow storage unit during a drug deal in May 2014.

During the visit Ms McNamara said Mr Kenny said to her "it's not the triads you need to be afraid of, it's Roger".

Ms McNamara told the court Mr Kenny said to her "he knows where you live".
She recalled her anxiety at being told that she and her younger sister, who were living with McNamara in their father's unit in Cronulla, were in danger.

The court heard Mr Kenny had earlier visited McNamara in prison and McNamara knew Mr Kenny was in contact with his family, even though McNamara was already represented by another solicitor.

Rogerson's barrister George Thomas asked Ms McNamara if she knew that Mr Kenny visited her upon her father's request and she answered "no".

The jury was told McNamara knew Mr Kenny from when they worked on the police force together.

McNamara claims Rogerson shot and killed Mr Gao before threatening him and his family.

Daughter believes Rogerson had a gun

Ms McNamara was again asked about the "lump" she had previously described seeing in Rogerson's pocket on the day of the murder.

On Thursday, in response to questioning, she said: "I believe it was a gun".
Mr Thomas asked whether Ms McNamara had made herself believe that "because people put things in your head?" but she replied "no".

Ms McNamara broke down in tears on the witness stand and was inconsolable for a while during testimony in which she criticised the way she was dealt with by police.

She said police got angry with her, because they did not like what she was saying, even though it was the truth.

Ms McNamara denied a suggestion that police told her at the time, that her recollection appeared to be rehearsed.

According to Rogerson, Mr Gao was already dead by the time Rogerson entered the storage unit.

The trial continues.

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Blame pinned on Roger Rogerson 'he said he'd kill you girls'

Accused murderer Glen McNamara cried and shook as he told his daughter that on the day Jamie Gao was killed, his co-accused Roger Rogerson had warned him “he’d kill you girls — I was looking down the barrel of a gun”, a court heard.
Jessica McNamara told the NSW Supreme Court jury yesterday she saw her father in prison about a week after he and Rogerson had been arrested and charged with shooting the 20-year-old would-be drug dealer in a rented southwest Sydney storage shed on May 20, 2014.
An emotional Ms McNamara said she and her sister met their father in prison on about May 31, 2014, during which they had a conversation about the murder.
“He (Rogerson) shot him, I didn’t know. He said he would kill you girls. I was looking down the barrel of a gun.”
In the fifth week of the NSW Supreme Court murder trial, Kara Shead, acting for Mr McNamara, then asked the 25-year-old about her father’s character. After bursting into tears, she replied he was a “good man” who would never be violent.
“We were a close-knit family,” she said through the tears. “Any time I needed anything, he’d be the first there. He coached my soccer team. He sat through countless hours of dancing. We hung out, we went fishing. I love him.”
Mr McNamara pulled a white tissue from his pocket and wiped his eyes with his head down as his daughter sat crying in the witness box. Before Ms McNamara was cross-examined, judge Geoffrey Bellew issued a direction to the jury, urging caution when considering her evidence about the conversation with her father in prison as “unreliable” hearsay.
The court previously heard Ms McNamara, her father and Mr Rogerson had a beer together at the McNamara family apartment on the evening of May 20, 2014. She said Mr Rogerson told her father that he had “such nice daughters ... really lovely, lovely girls” while tapping a dark coloured lump in his pocket.
“I could see the top of what was in his pocket and it was a dark colour,” she said, adding that her father at that time “was pale, his hands were twitchy”.
Mr Rogerson and Mr McNamara have pleaded not guilty to murdering Gao in a storage shed in Padstow, after which they allegedly took the 2.78kg of ice he had brought with him, stuffed his body into an old surfboard cover and dumped it at sea. Gao’s body was discovered several kilometres off the coast of Cronulla six days later.
The pair pleaded not guilty to the charge of supplying a large commercial quantity of a prohibited drug. The crown case is that both men were part of a “joint criminal enterprise” to harm or kill Gao.
The trial continues.

More here:

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Jamie Gao murder trial: Glen McNamara skittish after Roger Rogerson comment about daughters, court told

The eldest daughter of accused murderer Glen McNamara has tearfully recalled seeing her father with co-accused Roger Rogerson on the day Sydney student Jamie Gao was killed.
Jessica McNamara, 25, told the NSW Supreme Court in Sydney her father's demeanour changed and he became pale and skittish after Rogerson remarked that McNamara had "lovely" daughters.
The men, both former police officers, have pleaded not guilty to killing 20-year-old Mr Gao at a storage shed in Padstow and dumping his body off the coast of Cronulla in May 2014.
The court heard the pair were at the Cronulla unit where McNamara and his two daughters were living in May 2014.
Ms McNamara said at the time Rogerson made the comment about her and her sister, he was tapping on something in his right trouser pocket, where she saw a lump.
McNamara claims Rogerson was the one who shot Mr Gao, and that Rogerson threatened him and his family after it happened.
Ms McNamara told the court she had seen her father with Rogerson before, but this time something was different.
She said her father was not acting like himself.
The court was told Rogerson joined in some chit-chat about the McNamaras' cat, saying all animals loved him.
She said Rogerson then said to her father that "he had really lovely, lovely girls" and after that her father "kept moving, twitching, he just wasn't calm and still".
Ms McNamara told the court that before this her father would regularly go on fishing trips in his boat with Rogerson.
This was the boat, prosecutors said, McNamara and Rogerson later used to dump Mr Gao's body at sea.
Earlier another former police officer, William Duff, denied having any conversation with his friend Rogerson about what he would tell police.
Mr Duff initially told investigators Rogerson had come to his home on the day of the alleged murder, but later said this must have happened five days earlier.
According to Rogerson, Mr Gao was already dead by the time Rogerson entered the storage unit.
The trial continues.

Glen McNamara's daughter gives evidence for him at his murder trial with Roger Rogerson

Glen McNamara gave his daughter a quick wink and a nod as she walked into the packed courtroom.

Minutes later she was wiping tears from her cheeks as she spoke about her father's friend and the moment she spotted a dark coloured object protruding out of the right hand pocket of his trousers.

That man was Roger Rogerson and as he tapped on his pocket he said to her father that he had "such nice daughters ... really lovely, lovely girls", the NSW Supreme Court was told on Tuesday.

"I could see the top of what was in his pocket and it was a dark colour," Jessica McNamara, 25,  said.
What Ms NcNamara saw and heard was only hours after her father and Mr Rogerson allegedly killed Sydney university student Jamie Gao inside a southern Sydney storage shed.

"I could see what was in his pocket": Jessica McNamara.
"I could see what was in his pocket": Jessica McNamara. Photo: James Brickwood
Mr Gao was shot dead, stuffed inside a silver surfboard bag and dumped at sea off the shores of Cronulla.

Mr McNamara's is arguing that Mr Rogerson shot Mr Gao and then threatened his life and the lives of his two daughters.

He only agreed to help Mr Rogerson dispose of the body because he was "terrified" and "acted under duress", his defence barrister Kara Shead has said.

Ms McNamara told the jury her father was "pale" and "twitchy" when he returned home to their Cronulla apartment on the afternoon of May 20, 2014.

He had told her he had been repairing the family boat and she gave him soap to wash the oil off his hands.

"He didn't seem himself, he didn't seem upbeat," she said.

"He seemed uneasy … he was pale, his hands were twitchy. He was fidgety."

Ms McNamara said when she came out of her bedroom that evening, she sat down on a lounge and talked to Mr Rogerson and her father. There were beers on the dining room table.

Mr Rogerson stayed in the apartment for about two hours before leaving between 7pm and 7.30pm.

Mr McNamara then left his McDonald Street apartment and took his two daughters, Jessica and Lucy, to nearby pub Northies for dinner.

"I noticed that he didn't eat," Ms McNamara said.

When Ms McNamara was questioned about the boat her father used to dispose of Mr Gao's body,  her lips started quivering and she cried.

"[Dad] and I would regularly go fishing on the boat, we liked taking the boat out together," she said.

Mr McNamara dabbed his eyes with tissues before putting his hands on his head.
He was sitting just a metre away from his co-accused Mr Rogerson who sat with no expression.

Mr Rogerson's defence is that Mr McNamara shot and killed Mr Gao inside unit 803 of Rent-A-Space at Padstow.

Barrister George Thomas has said Mr Rogerson opened the shed door and saw Mr Gao "dead on the floor with a hand gun lying near him".

Crown Prosecutor Christopher Maxwell, QC,  said the prosecution couldn't prove which of the accused fired the gun but it did not have to.

This was because Mr Rogerson and Mr McNamara were part of a joint criminal enterprise to murder Mr Gao and then steal the 2.78 kilograms of methylamphetamine he had brought to sell to them.

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Sunday, February 28, 2016

Glen McNamara, Roger Rogerson share beers and boxing talk after Jamie Gao killed: court

Two former policemen are accused of carrying out an execution on a Tuesday.

By Thursday, they were drinking beer and rubbing shoulders with a professional boxer and former NRL player.

A group of friends have told a NSW Supreme Court jury how they shared beers with murder accused Glen McNamara and Roger Rogerson, two days after they allegedly killed Sydney university student Jamie Gao on May 20, 2014.

Among the group was boxer and former NRL player Garth Wood, who played for South Sydney and Balmain.

Wood rose to fame by beating Anthony Mundine in 2010 after winning reality television series The Contender.

Friend Joe Calamia told the court everything appeared to be "normal" during a drinking session at the Crown Hotel at Revesby on Thursday, May 22.

Mr Calamia said he recalled talking to Mr McNamara about their divorces.

"He seemed perfectly normal to me," Mr Calamia told the court.

"He seemed fine, he was in good spirits," part of his police statement said.

Mr Calamia, a regular drinker with a group who call themselves "The Brains Trust", said Mr Rogerson also seemed "fine".

"Roger seemed fine to me. I just thought it was a normal night. Didn't seem anything out of the ordinary," he said.

Several friends testified about how they regularly drank with Mr Rogerson and that Mr McNamara would join them on the odd occasion.

Security footage shows the two former policemen drinking with a group at the Crown Hotel in the days after Mr Gao's death.

Mr McNamara's defence is that Mr Rogerson shot Mr Gao and that he only helped to dispose of the  body because he was "terrified".  

"Roger Rogerson shot and killed Jamie Gao ... He then threatened Mr McNamara's life," Mr McNamara's barrister Kara Shead told the jury in her opening address.

"Glen McNamara thereafter acted under duress. He has a defence to the charges you have heard the Crown outline," Ms Shead said.

But Mr Rogerson's barrister George Thomas said his client's version of events was "a very different state of the universe".

Mr Thomas said Mr McNamara shot and killed Mr Gao inside unit 803 of Rent-A-Space at Padstow on May 20, 2014.

CCTV footage shows Mr Gao and Mr McNamara entering the storage shed and shutting the door at 1.45pm. They are alone for just over three minutes before Mr Rogerson enters.

Mr Thomas said Mr Rogerson, 76, opened the shed door and saw Mr Gao "dead on the floor with a hand gun lying near him".

On Monday, the court also heard from a former employee of Kennards Hire, who gave evidence about lending a chain block to Mr Rogerson and Mr McNamara on the day Mr Gao was killed.

Jake Bridge said a man wearing a red T-shirt had asked to pay in cash to hire to chain block and that he was with a man wearing a dark coloured T-shirt who walked with a distinct limp.

Both men have pleaded not guilty to murder and supplying a large commercial quantity of prohibited drugs.

with Louise Hall 

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