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Ex-cop Louis Mahony thought he’d got away with staging wife Lainie Coldwell’s murder

The scene at the Charleville house where Louis Mahony (inset) claimed his partner of 18 years fell from a ladder in 2009. Picture: Jamie Hanson

EVEN on the day he was arrested for murder, cocky ex-cop Louis Mahony was so confident he’d get off, he told officers they would soon be shouting him drinks to apologise.

For six years Mahony thought he had fooled the world after ruthlessly disposing of an inconvenient wife.

He’d staged the scene to make it appear that Lainie Coldwell, his defacto wife of 18 years, had fallen from a ladder at their Charleville home on August 23, 2009.

It convinced the country cops, who didn’t realise they were staring at the murder weapon – a bloody antique iron lying among rocks where Lainie supposedly fell and struck her head.

Mahony thought his dreams were in reach – he had Lainie’s multimillion-dollar life insurance policies to cash in.

Lainie Coldwell with husband Louis Mahony and their young daughter, who was three when her mother was murdered.

He was also free to pursue the foreign women on 457 visas at the local abattoir, where he worked after leaving his former career as a Northern Territory police officer.

The flies in the ointment were detectives from the state’s homicide squad, brought in to reinvestigate the case years after Lainie’s supposed freak accident.

“He said to me, ‘Renee, one day when this is all over, you are going to buy me a beer and apologise for what you’ve done to me’,” Detective Renee Hoile recalls of the day she arrested Mahony in December 2015.

Mahony’s prediction was proved spectacularly wrong last week, when he was convicted of killing Lainie, the mother of his young daughter.

With the 43-year-old sentenced to life imprisonment, the inside story of his downfall can now be told by the detectives who brought him to justice.

Detective Acting Sergeant Renee Hoile and Detective Inspector Damien Hansen, who broke the case open. Picture: Jamie Hanson

They revealed how a calculating and “narcissistic” Mahony initially researched car crashes and poisons before deciding to stage a fatal fall. He spent the day of his wife’s funeral planning a romantic getaway with a lover.

It’s hard to escape comparisons with Queensland’s other egotistical wife-killer, Gerard Baden-Clay, who murdered wife Allison in 2012 and thought he could escape justice.

In both cases, the accused was involved with other women and stood to benefit from large insurance payouts. And in both, the women standing in the way of a life of ease and fortune ended up dead.

Interestingly, insurers were the first to raise the alarm about Mahony. About two weeks after Lainie died, they contacted Charleville police to report they had more than a passing interest in the case.

Two life insurance policies worth a whopping $2.25 million had been taken out in Lainie’s name in the two months before her death. Suspicions were so grave, the company refused to pay out the policies.

The blood-stained antique iron that Mahony used to kill his wife.

Mahony arrives at court in Charleville for his committal hearing.

The blood-stained antique iron that Mahony used to kill his wife.

In 2009, it had been Mahony who made the triple-0 call, saying he found Lainie unconscious in a puddle of blood at the base of a large gum tree. She must have fallen taking down party lights in the tree, he said.

Lainie, 36, was flown to the Royal Brisbane Hospital, with Mahony by her side. Her family made the agonising decision to turn off her life support system and donate her organs.

At the scene, a rusted and bloodied antique iron lying among rocks at the base of the tree was photographed but not collected. It has not been found since. It is now believed Mahony used the iron to deliver a fatal blow to the back of his wife’s head.

In a tragic series of failings, a lone detective in Charleville made little headway before moving away, leaving the case to stagnate.

Local sergeant Gerard Thornton always had his suspicions and tried to pursue the investigation between other duties before calling in Brisbane-based homicide detectives in early 2013.

The case had an unusual complication. Because Lainie’s organs were donated, an autopsy had not been conducted. So, Detective Hoile and colleague Karen Murray set about contacting the medical specialists brought in from hospitals around the southeast to work on the organ donation process.

They confirmed that Lainie’s only significant injury was a single blow to the back of her head.

Lainie had supposedly fallen at least five metres from a ladder propped on the tray of Mahony’s ute.

“There were no ribs broken, no other organs injured,” said Detective Inspector Damien Hansen, who manages the homicide squad.

Photographs from the scene showed blood had inexplicably seeped onto the flat of the iron, which had been face down on rocks at the tree’s base. Strands of Lainie’s blonde hair were clearly visible amid blood on the underside.

As part of the original investigation, police had seized and held Mahony’s laptop. When computer expert James Morris, a civilian from the Queensland Police electronic evidence examination unit, inspected the computer, he struck gold.

Crime scene photo of the ladder balanced on the back of Mahony’s ute

Tributes at the base of the tree near where Lainie’s body was found.

Before Lainie’s death, Mahony had Googled terms including poisoning, car crashes, head injuries and forensic science. After her death, he was back online organising his love life.

“He’s searching Gold Coast limousines and Dracula’s Restaurant, and the Marriott Hotel on the Gold Coast. That’s leading up to the funeral and on the day of her funeral,” Detective Hoile says.

For a cop with an intimate understanding of police procedures, Mahony made plenty of mistakes.

In his triple-0 call, he twice said Lainie was face down.

“That’s not possible if the injury is to the back of the head,” Detective Hoile says.

Call records to insurers showed that before his wife’s death, Mahony had asked whether they would pay out if someone died in a car crash but wasn’t wearing a seatbelt. And compromising videos of Mahony and a Korean co-worker were found on his laptop.

Lainie was aware of Mahony’s affairs and made it known that she was leaving him and taking their daughter, Dakota, then three.

Three years after he murdered his wife – while still a free man – Mahony remarried a wealthy divorcee. She continued to raise Dakota when Mahony was arrested in 2015, and she stood by him through his trial.

To this day, Detective Hoile is struck by Mahony’s lack of remorse in robbing Dakota of a mother.

“There was never a time in my discussions with him where he ever displayed emotion when he was talking about her. If there was any emotion, it was about him,” she said.

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IT’S a haunting photograph.

A little boy sits in the gutter dressed in an oversized blue forensics suit. He is barefoot and rests his head on one hand as he listens intently to the stranger sitting next to him.

The stranger — a Gold Coast detective — has just arrived at Upper Coomera, a quiet ordinary suburb that has suddenly become a major crime scene.

It was inside the child’s home the horror unfolded. His mother Renee Kuch, 39, and father Corey Croft, 37, had been stabbed to death more than 24 hours earlier by Ms Kuch’s ex-partner Christopher Carter, a former soldier.

Carter had gained custody of the pair’s two children, now aged 16 and 19, in 2015 and she began a relationship and had another child with Mr Croft.

The 39-year-old was found not guilty of murder or manslaughter this week by a Brisbane Supreme Court jury, the jury clearly believing his account that he killed the pair out of self-defence.

The young boy is comforted outside his home after both his parents were killed. Photo: Glenn Hampson

When he left their home that night, on January 20 2015, the only person still alive inside was the couple’s five-year-old son who had been asleep in his room when his parents were killed.

The boy woke to an unimaginable scene. His parents were dead. There was so much blood he is now traumatised by the colour red. He picked the knife from near his mum’s body and put it in the sink.

He then waited for help. But no one came.

PRAYERS FOR A ‘GUILTY’ VERDICT

The little boy’s grandmother Jo-Anne Kuch is angry.

She couldn’t sit through every day of the trial and wasn’t up to being there when it all came to an end late Thursday afternoon.

Her partner was in court to hear the jury foreman deliver the not guilty verdicts for the murders of her daughter and her partner.

“I couldn’t be there. I would have had a heart attack,” Ms Kuch told news.com.au from her Gold Coast home.

The things she heard during the trial devastated her. The trial process made her angry.

“I’m shattered, I’m so upset and angry. I felt like killing someone last night… It’s an injustice, an injustice in the legal system. It’s quite simple.”

Her partner Rod left the court when the verdicts were read. The two slipped out before the media frenzy that surrounded Mr Carter — who was about to walk out of court, a free man, for the first time in two years.

“It’s just horrendous, absolutely horrendous and heartbreaking.”

Ms Kuch and her family have endured a living hell in the two years since the stabbings.

“We’ve waited two years. It’s affected all of our lives, especially [the boy]. As I said to you, he’s developed ADHD, separation anxiety, he locks all the doors and windows at night.”

She is angry things were said in court about her daughter that she was unable to defend herself. The jury was told of binge drinking and affairs — accusations Ms Kuch rejects.

‘WHY DIDN’T SOMEONE COME AND HELP ME’

Ms Kuch is shattered most about the impact the killings are having on her grandson. He turned eight a week before the trial began.

“He’s OK at the moment. He wasn’t himself last weekend. We wanted to make a happy day at the park, he went swimming and on a boogie board but I could just tell he was affected.”

He lives with Ms Kuch’s sister and they are doing their best to give him a normal life, but they worry the emotional scars — not to mention what he saw and heard that night — will return to haunt him.

Ms Kuch can barely bring herself to look at the picture of him sitting in the gutter. His clothes had been replaced with the forensic suit given to him by officers who arrived within minutes of the 000 call.

More than 24 hours after the stabbings, Ms Kuch’s sister — with whom the boy now lives — went to the house after calls went unanswered.

She found the bodies and rescued the boy from the home.

Renne Kuch’s son and her mother Jo-Anne Kuch. Picture: Facebook

“He said after, ‘Why didn’t someone come and help me.’ It’s just horrendous,” she said, detailing for the first time what the boy went through.

“He couldn’t get out of the house because Corey was [dead] at the front door. He thought they were playing tricks on him,” she sobbed.

He thinks he can remember shouting that night, but has never said what he saw or heard inside the home. But Ms Kuch said he recently remembered “seeing a man”.

The family has managed to keep the trial away from him so far. But they know he will one day learn the truth.

He saw a psychologist regularly who was helping him cope with the horror he’d seen. He hates the colour red because that’s all he saw when he woke up, but had made good progress recently.

“My sister got him into sport and everything he touches turns to gold. He’s a good runner, he plays soccer — he just tries everything. It’s just a sham that Renee and Corey aren’t here to see him grow up.”

INSIDE THE HOME

This trial was no whodunnit, no mystery. Mr Carter never denied stabbing the couple. The central question the jury members had to grapple with was whether prosecutors could prove he had the intention to murder them.

Ms Kuch was stabbed at least 10 times. The fatal blow was to her neck and was so severe it severed her spinal cord. Her partner had five stab wounds, all in the neck and head.

The trial heard Carter was made aware Croft had forced a 10-year-old girl to shower with him and that he was a convicted paedophile who had raped a child in South Australia.

Ms Kuch told news.com.au she “condemns paedophiles” but insists her daughter wasn’t aware of Mr Croft’s past until she was expecting his child.

“Renee didn’t know about his past. She had the child, but you still don’t kill paedophiles, you don’t have that right. [Corey] was a great father to [the boy] and he and Renee had a good relationship. Sometimes it wasn’t, but that’s just a normal relationship.”

During his closing address on Wednesday, Crown prosector Glen Cash QC argued Carter intended to kill Croft and Renee Kuch.

Former soldier Christopher Carter leaves the Brisbane Supreme Court after being found not guilty. Picture: AAP

Christopher Carter said he was acting in self defence.

“The intent was one he developed in the course of the interactions, not that he came there to kill,” he said.

But Mr Carter’s barrister David Brustman QC argued it was not murder but an “unforeseeable” event that was the result of years of tension and hostility between Mr Carter and Renee Kuch.

Mr Carter gave evidence at trial and told the jury he went to the home just to talk to his wife.

The Crown alleged he went there, a former soldier who knew how to kill, to commit murder.

After a heated argument at the doorway, the court heard Ms Kuch appeared with a knife and the two wrestled over it. He stabbed her several times, and then said he was attacked by Mr Croft.

“I was stabbing Corey. As we moved back into what was the doorway, Corey fell to the ground.

“I didn’t know where Renee had gone through that period. I’ve just stood up and started moving to the back of the house,” Carter said.

Corey Croft was a convicted child sex offender..

Police outside the couple’s home. Picture: Annette Dew

It was then he said Ms Kuch attacked him again

“I was in a state of shock, I couldn’t believe what happened. I stabbed her. I didn’t mean to do it. I pushed her down off me. The way she fell to the ground … it was essentially like she was unconscious and I’ve seen a pool of blood was coming from her head.”

He admitted he placed the knife in her hand.

“The only thing I remember thinking in my head was: ‘It’s your knife, you can have it back.’”

A MOTHER’S LOVE

Ms Kuch couldn’t listen to the graphic evidence. Few parents could. Each time the details of her daughter’s injuries were spoken in court, she broke down in tears.

She wants her daughter remembered in a different way to what she says are mistruths from the court case.

“She was a beautiful, caring mother who loved her children. She was well liked at work, she would do anything for anyone.”

She worked in aged care, but at one stage dreamt of a career in the police force. “She didn’t pass the physical though because of her asthma.”

Not guilty…Christopher Carter.

Police found Renee Kuch and Corey Croft’s bodies inside their home. Picture: Annette Dew

Now the trial was over Ms Kuch told news.com.au she could finally go ahead with plan to scatter her ashes. She has a spot in mind, a part of the Queensland coast that is special to the family.

“That’s where my brother’s ashes were spread. A lot of Renee’s friends will be there, they’re all married now with children.”

The date she has set is not going to be Renee’s birthday, but January 20. It will be three years since she was killed.

“That’s when we are going to do it; that’s when she was taken from us.”

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THE father of Justine Damond, the Australian woman killed by a police officer in Minnesota, has called for justice for his daughter.

“We only ask that the light of justice shine down on the circumstances of her death,” an emotional John Ruszczyk said outside his family home in Freshwater on Sydney’s northern beaches this afternoon.

The bookshop owner and his family paid tribute to the former vet, with his family supporting him as he faced the media.

“We thought yesterday was our worst nightmare. But we awoke to the ugly truth, and it hurt even more.

“We went down to Freshy beach this morning, and saw the darkness change to light.” he said.

Ruszczyk paid tribute to his daughter, saying she touched many lives.

“Justine our daughter was so special to us, and to so many others,” he said. “Justine was a beacon to all of us,” he added.

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Maryan Herffernan and John Ruszczyk (front), father of Justine Damond, with brother Jason Ruszczyk and Katarina Ruszczyk. Picture: Dylan Robinson

According to the Star Tribune, officer Mohamed Noor violated his department’s rules on the use of bodycams.

The Minneapolis Police Department’s Policy and Procedure manual says that any use of force requires the camera’s activation. If things change quickly and the officer is too busy, he or she should activate the camera “as soon as it is safe to do so”.

The cameras record a 30-second video buffer, a so-called “lookback” that allows officers to capture whatever happened in the half-minute before it’s activated.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is investigating the actions of Noor, who shot Justine Ruszczyk Damond, 40, on Saturday night.

The BCA said in a statement that it will be the Police Department’s job to determine whether the officers officially violated the department’s body camera policy.

Ms Damond’s distraught fiance made an emotional appeal, saying his family is “utterly devastated”.

Don Damond, 50, said the family were “desperate for information” about her shooting — in which he also referred to as a “homicide.”

The Hennepin County Medical Examiner, after conducting an autopsy on Ms Damond, has issued a statement saying the fatal police shooting was a homicide. She died from a gunshot wound to her abdomen.

Police say officers were responding to a call about a possible assault late on Saturday when Ms Damond was killed. Authorities have released no details about what led to the shooting.

But a history of complaints made against the police officer who shot Ms Damond, including one incident which he is being sued for, has also emerged.

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A BRISBANE man used his knowledge as a former police officer to plot the murders of his wife and two children in a frenzied stabbing attack at their family home.

The man in his 40s, who cannot be named to protect the identities of the victims, has pleaded guilty in the Brisbane Supreme Court to three charges of attempted murder.

This afternoon he was sentenced to life in prison.

Justice Peter Flanagan said there were only two to three precedent cases for life sentences on attempted murder charges in Queensland.

But he said the horrific nature of the man’s attempted killing spree warranted a severe sentence.

“All three victims carry with them to this day the terrible scars of that night,” the judge said.

The man was a police officer for 17 years before resigning in 2008.

Photo: Police arrested the man at a home at Carina Brisbane Qld on February 2, 2014. (ABC TV)

He will be eligible for parole after serving 15 years.

Previously, the court heard harrowing details of his rampage through the family home on February 2, 2014.

Crown prosecutor Dejana Kovac said the man hatched the plan in response to his wife discovering he had had multiple affairs with prostitutes.

“He was in fact spending money on his sexual activities … and even (pawned his wife’s) engagement ring to fund prostitutes,” Ms Kovac said.

He plotted the murder of his family for about a week beforehand, deciding 6am was the best time to coincide with shift changes at the police station.

He selected two knives from the kitchen and crept into his wife’s bedroom first — because “he knew she would be the hardest person to kill”.

Ms Kovac said he “savagely attacked her”, targeting her thighs and neck “hoping to hit an artery”.

“ … She was defenceless from his brutal attack,” she said.

The man thought he’d done enough to kill her judging by the bloodshed.

The woman’s screams woke their young son, which Ms Kovac said upset the man “because he was hoping he would kill his son while he was asleep”.

He approached the child as he sat with a blanket around him in the living room and stabbed him twice in the neck.

The child replied: “That hurt, don’t do it again”.

By now the couple’s daughter had woken and witnessed the attack on her little brother.

She tried desperately to escape, but her father chased her through the house.

“She fought back, begged him to stop … ,” Ms Kovac said.

The child pleaded: “I thought you loved me” as she suffered up to 40 stab wounds.

The attack came to an end when the man’s wife managed to phone Triple 0.

The family miraculously somehow survived, although they have significant physical and emotional scars.

In a victim impact statement read to the court, the man’s wife described her bodily scarring as a “road map” of an attack that could never be erased.

She said she’d continued to have severe nightmares of her daughter pleading with her father not to kill her.

“My children will carry this trauma with them for the rest of their lives, lives that I hope will be long despite the attempted efforts of their father to cut them short,” the statement said.

“My children are now growing up with the stigma, shame and pain of having a parent who tried to murder them.

“The first time (my children) saw me after the crime I was still in hospital. I can never forget the shock and fear on their faces when they saw me … I had tubes and drains coming out of my neck and face, I was weak. “(My children) didn’t know if they could hug me because there wasn’t anywhere that they could see that wasn’t injured.

“My body is littered with scars, I remember counting the number of wounds I had after my stitches were removed. I was chilled by the number: 71.” A number I will never forget. That day was my 911 day.

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Beijing: A senior Chinese policeman has been jailed for 17 years for embezzling money to buy two Australian homes for his two daughters.

The Australian real estate purchases were among a huge property portfolio, with no obvious legitimate source of funding, Chinese prosecutors said.

Wang Jun Ren police chief of Guta District of Jinzhou City image www.crimefiles.net

One of the homes is a four bedroom, two bathroom house in Revesby Heights in NSW, Australian property records show.

Wang Jun Ren, 59, was the police chief of Guta District of Jinzhou City in Liaoning province, when he began asking a local property developer for millions of Chinese yuan to pay for the Australian real estate purchases for his family.

In return, he outsourced up to 20 construction projects to the property developer, including the construction of police stations, Chinese court documents show.

In 2008, documents showed Wang took 2.36 million Chinese yuan (440,000) from a Beizhen city property developer to buy a property for his oldest daughter, Wang Ju, and her husband, Jin Jing, in Australia.

In August and December 2011, Wang reimbursed 101,911 Chinese yuan in airfares for his wife and daughters’ return travel to Australia from a police bureau bank account, the court was told.

The Revesby house was bought by Wang Ju and her husband for $840,000 in September 2011.

The house in Revesby Heights.image www.crimefiles.net

In September 2013, Wang used public funds to convert currency into $20,000 to visit his family in Australia.

The same year he took another 4million Chinese yuan from the same property developer to buy an Australian property for his second daughter, Wang Ting. The money was transferred directly to her bank account in small amounts by the property developer’s employees, the court was told.

Wang was arrested in August 2015, confessed and returned some of the money last year. He was originally convicted in August 2016.

Around the time of the trial, his daughter moved out of the Revesby house. She has kept it as an investment property, and purchased another home in Sydney’s Castle Hill for $1.7 million.

But a 17-year-jail sentence and 1million Chinese yuan fine was handed down to Wang after Linghai City prosecutors appealed what they said was the earlier, lenient sentence. His wife has been on bail since December.

Wang was convicted of corruptly taking 174million yuan by himself, and another 24,800 yuan with his wife, taking bribes of 680million yuan, and having a huge amount of property of unknown source. That trial was held in December.

The jail sentence comprised of four years for corruption, 12 years for bribe taking, and four years for the unknown funding source of a huge number of properties.

The court heard evidence from the property developer detailing how he transferred the money to Australia, was told that Wang returned the favour to the property developer by outsourcing the construction projects to his company, including the construction of police stations.

The property developer’s son was employed as Wang’s driver at a police station.

Two ex police officers get life sentences after court finds them guilty of executing Jamie Gao.

Roger Rogerson, left, and Glen McNamara during the trial.image www.crimefiles.net

As grey-haired killers Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara waited to learn their fate for murder, each of them took turns in shutting their eyes for several minutes at a time.

But the former policemen, 75 and 57 respectively, were wide-eyed and standing when they were given a life sentence for the “heinous” and “audacious” murder of university student and drug dealer Jamie Gao, 20.

>>>>SEE OUR EARLIER CRIMES FILES STORY ABOUT THIS MURDER HERE

Rogerson, McNamara trial: What happened in unit 803?

The trial of Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara over the murder of Jamie Gao heard three accounts of the university student’s death in a Sydney storage unit.

On Friday Justice Geoffrey Bellew found the pair had been “overwhelmed by greed” when they killed Mr Gao to steal 2.78 kilograms of ice.

He also said the pair had “a complete disregard for the life of another human being” when they murdered Mr Gao inside a southern Sydney storage unit in May 2014.

“The joint criminal enterprise to which each offender was a party was extensive in its planning, brutal in its execution, and callous in its aftermath,” Justice Bellew said during his sentencing remarks before the NSW Supreme Court on Friday.

The pair were also given a minimum nine-year sentence for the supply of a prohibited narcotic drug

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Upon hearing the life sentence handed down, Mr Gao’s family released a statement, saying the life sentence was everything they had hoped for.

“To have these two men, who took Jamie from us, sentenced to essentially die in jail, is absolutely fitting,” they said.

“The courts can’t lessen the term of Jamie’s death or the impact that his death, the investigation and ensuing trial has had on our family. Unfortunately, there is no opportunity for a lesser sentence for Jamie or for those of us left behind.”

During his sentencing remarks Justice Bellew noted Mr Gao had been killed by two former police officers.

Jamie Gao. Photo Facebook image www.crimefiles.net

Jamie Gao.  Photo: Facebook

“Aspects of their commission of these crimes reflect the fact the offenders put to use, for all the wrong reasons, knowledge and experience that they gained as a consequence of their investigation of criminal offences when they were members of the police force,” he said.

Upon learning his fate, an apparently emotionless Rogerson hobbled down the stairs in his prison greens with corrective service officers to the cells below the historic Darlinghurst court complex.

The joint criminal enterprise … was extensive in its planning, brutal in its execution and callous in its aftermath.

Justice Geoffrey Bellew

McNamara said to his teary family “be strong”: his daughter Jessica responded by blowing kisses.

During an 18-week trial, a jury heard how Rogerson and McNamara had spent months planning the murder of Mr Gao to steal 2.78 kilograms of the drug ice from him.

Mr Gao was shot dead and stuffed into a silver surfboard bag then dumped at sea. His body was found floating off the shore of Cronulla several days later.

“The disposal of the deceased’s body at sea was both cruel and insensitive. It was done solely for the purpose of the offenders endeavouring to ensure that the deceased would never be found, rendering it all the more difficult for any responsibility to ever be attributed to either of them,” Justice Bellew said.

During the sentencing hearing the court heard how on the day of the murder, Mr Gao was captured on CCTV footage going into unit 803 at Padstow Rent-a-Space, with McNamara.

A little more than three minutes later, Rogerson walked into the shed.

At some point, Mr Gao was shot dead although Rogerson and McNamara blamed one another.

Rogerson told the court that McNamara told him there had been a struggle, and that Mr Gao had shot himself twice in the chest.

But McNamara said he was by himself with Mr Gao inside the shed when Rogerson opened the door and demanded the victim hand over the “gear”.

Mr Gao pulled out a combat-style knife and, simultaneously, Rogerson produced a gun and fired two shots.

McNamara said Rogerson then aimed the gun at his head and threatened to kill him and his daughters if he did not help dispose of the body.

Justice Bellew rejected both of their accounts but said he could not find beyond reasonable doubt who had pulled the trigger.

“The deceased was executed in cold blood, just as the offenders had planned. Clearly, one of them shot the deceased. There is an obvious suspicion, arising from the evidence of the presence of gunshot residue on his clothing, that it was Rogerson who did so,” he said.

“Whilst I am satisfied that the deceased was shot by one of the offenders whilst in storage unit 803, I am unable to determine which offender was responsible.”

The jury accepted the pair were part of a joint criminal enterprise, finding them both guilty of murder and commercial supply of a prohibited drug in June.

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Henry Sapiecha

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Published on Jul 7, 2016

10 officers have been shot by two snipers, leaving three officers dead and two in surgery, according to the Dallas police chief, KDFW reported. The shooting broke out during peaceful protests in downtown Dallas. There is an active shooter situation.
Dallas Police Chief David O. Brown added that the shots came from two snipers.

Three of the officers are reported to be in critical condition.
TAGS-
Dallas Police Chief: 2 snipers shoot 10 officers; 3 killed, 3 in critical condition, 2 in surgery
10 police officers shot, 3 killed at Dallas #BlackLivesMatter rally, sniper reported

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Rogerson, McNamara trial: What happened in Unit 803?

The trial of Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara over the murder of Jamie Gao heard three stories of how the university student died in a Sydney storage unit.

Eleven years ago, Roger “Don’t call me The Dodger” Rogerson was sitting in the dock, clutching a John Grisham thriller as he waited to find out how long he would be spending in the Big House this time around.

“Few in the community would not have heard of Roger Rogerson,” said Judge Peter Berman in 2005, noting that Rogerson had once quipped the media had changed his name by deed poll to “Disgraced Former Detective”.

Roger Rogerson leaves Sydney's King Street Supreme Court in April 2016 image www.crimefiles.net

Roger Rogerson leaves Sydney’s King Street Supreme Court in April 2016 after facing the court on murder charges. Photo: Christopher Pearce

On hearing his client had received a two-year jail term for lying to the Police Integrity Commission, his lawyer, Paul Kenny, said outside court: “Roger used to be a tough guy. These days he’s just a broken-down old man … completely broken by the system.”
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Fast forward more than a decade and the “broken-down old man” is now 75, has dodgy hips, and is heading back to his home away from home – jail. He was on Wednesday found guilty of murdering university student Jamie Gao, with fellow ex-detective Glen McNamara. This will be Rogerson’s fourth stint behind bars.

Born in January 1941, Roger Caleb Rogerson was possibly the most corrupt police officer the country has ever known, although he has claimed the only corruption he was ever involved in was driving a police car while under the influence.

Rogerson after being released from Kirkconnell Correctional facility in 2006 image www.crimefiles.net

Rogerson after being released from Kirkconnell Correctional facility in 2006. Photo: Adam Hollingworth

As a police officer, Rogerson was present on two occasions when police shot and killed people, and on another two occasions he shot and killed people himself. The most famous of these was the heroin dealer Warren Lanfranchi, whom Rogerson shot and killed in a laneway in Chippendale in June 1981.

Lanfranchi, who, according to his girlfriend, Sallie-Anne Huckstepp​, was unarmed and carrying $10,000 and was delivered to the meeting by major crime figure Neddy Smith, who is currently serving a life sentence for an unrelated murder. The money was never found.

At the inquest, Rogerson was found to have fatally shot Lanfranchi while trying to effect an arrest. Interestingly, the jury failed to find that it was in self-defence. Witnesses told the inquest that they had heard two shots which were 10 seconds apart.

Rogerson speaking to the media in 1985 image www.crimefiles.net

Rogerson speaking to the media in 1985. Photo: Russell McPhedran

Years later, when the ABC screened Blue Murder, an explosive mini-series based on Rogerson’s infamy, he was less than impressed.

Of the scriptwriter, he said: “Ian David is a boof-headed, bald-headed, big-headed c—. I should have sued the c— and those f—wits at the ABC but of course I’ve got no credit left.”

And on the famous scene in Blue Murder which revisited Rogerson shooting Lanfranchi, Rogerson said: “I mean, he made it out to be this f—ing conspiracy between the 18 coppers who were there that day, when really it was just a Saturday afternoon’s work as far as we were concerned.”

Warren Lanfranchi, who was shot dead in Sydney's Chippendale in 1981. Rogerson was charged with his killing image www.crimefiles.net

Warren Lanfranchi, who was shot dead in Sydney’s Chippendale in 1981.

Rogerson was charged with his killing.

In 1984, only three years after the Lanfranchi shooting, undercover detective Michael Drury was standing in his kitchen at his Chatswood home when he was shot. He gave what was taken to be a dying deposition that he was due to testify in a major drugs trial and that Rogerson had offered him a bribe to protect a Melbourne drug dealer. However, he survived.

In 1985, Rogerson faced trial and was acquitted of the bribery of Drury. In 1989, he was acquitted of conspiring, with Christopher Dale Flannery and the confessed drug dealer Alan Williams, to murder Drury.

As his famous barrister in the bribery case, Chester Porter, QC, was to recount some years later, it was Rogerson’s word against Drury’s. Not only did Rogerson prove to be most compelling in the witness box, but during the hearing Porter had lulled Drury into a false sense of security by getting him to extol his virtues as an undercover cop, one of which was the ability to lie.

Sallie-Anne Huckstepp found floating face down in a pond in Centennial Park.image www.crimefiles.net

Sallie-Anne Huckstepp: found floating face down in a pond in Centennial Park.

“Very foolishly,” Porter later wrote in his autobiography, “he looked around at the magistrate’s court and said words to the effect that he could tell lies in the court, and nobody could pick him.”

Porter devastated Drury with this, pointing out that, as he was such a proficient liar, how was the jury to know when to believe him.

Apart from his trial, other matters were spiralling out of control for Rogerson in 1985.

Tony Martin (playing Neddy Smith) and Richard Roxburgh (playing Roger Rogerson) in the television show Blue Murder.image www.crimefiles.net

Tony Martin (playing Neddy Smith) and Richard Roxburgh (playing Roger Rogerson) in the television show Blue Murder.

Huckstepp was found floating face down in a pond in Centennial Park. Neddy Smith was charged – and later acquitted – of her murder.

Then there was the problem of gangland murders threatening to bring everyone down. Hitman Chris Flannery, also known as Mr Rent-a-Kill, was not only a central figure in the underworld wars, he was out of control.

Flannery, who was last seen in May 1985, was believed to be the shooter at the attempted murder of Drury the previous year.

The real Neddy Smith with Roger Rogerson.image www.crimefiles.net

The real Neddy Smith with Roger Rogerson.

At an inquest into Flannery’s suspected murder, Neddy Smith maintained that the one person Flannery trusted was Rogerson and that, after Flannery disappeared, Rogerson said to him: “Chris had to go, mate. He was becoming a danger to us all.”

Coroner Greg Glass announced that he suspected that Rogerson killed Chris Flannery. And if Rogerson didn’t kill Flannery, then he knew who did, the coroner said.

Rogerson later told Channel Nine’s Sunday program: “Flannery was a complete pest. The guys up here in Sydney tried to settle him down. They tried to look after him as best they could, but he was, I believe, out of control. Maybe it was the Melbourne instinct coming out of him. He didn’t want to do as he was told, he was out of control, and having overstepped that line, well, I suppose they said he had to go but I can assure you I had nothing to do with it.”

Former police officer Michael Drury. Roger Rogerson was charged with his attempted murder but found not guilty.image www.crimefiles.net

Former police officer Michael Drury. Roger Rogerson was charged with his attempted murder but found not guilty. Photo: James Brickwood

Smith’s testimony at Flannery’s inquest revealed the bitter falling out with Rogerson. Asked by a journalist if he felt sorry that his most infamous informant was serving a life sentence as well as suffering from Parkinson’s disease, Rogerson replied: “Very sorry. I feel so sorry for Ned I hope he dies as quickly as possible.”

Why?

Rogerson: “Because he’s a c—! Ha ha ha ha! Because he’s a big strong bloke, a brilliant street-fighter in his day, a guy who, for a while there, was making $30,000 a f—ing minute and who had more cash than the Reserve f—ing Bank, and now he’s lost his marbles and that’s sad. I hate seeing blokes go to jail. I’m like Rex Hunt I catch ’em and I throw ’em back. For mine, jail doesn’t work. To me, the challenge was always catching ’em. And listen, I’ve never, ever denied having a good time doing it. I enjoyed being a cop. I met some fantastic people, worked some great cases and travelled to some wonderful places. It was good bloody fun.”

Christopher Flannery photographed in 1981 image www.crimefiles.net

Christopher Flannery photographed in 1981.

Among the good times Rogerson enjoyed was an alleged romp with singer Shirley Bassey. Rogerson claims that he was walking to his favourite hamburger shop in the city when he spied someone hotfooting it across Goulburn Street “with a nice sequined handbag tucked under his arm”.

Rogerson told Ralph magazine: “So I chased after him, tackled him to the ground and elicited a confession out of him. Turns out he’d swiped Shirley Bassey’s handbag from backstage as she rehearsed for a gig at Chequers that night … Anyway, after I whipped this bloke up to Central and charged him, I walked back to Chequers with the handbag. I knew the owner pretty well and he introduced me to Shirley … and, well, let’s just say she showed her appreciation in a very special way.”

Interviewer: “Are you saying you banged Shirley Bassey, the same Shirley Bassey who sang Goldfinger, backstage at Chequers?”

Shirley Bassey, who Rogerson claims he 'got to know very well'image www.crimefiles.net

Shirley Bassey, who Rogerson claims he ‘got to know very well’. Photo: Sandy Scheltema

Rogerson: “No, I’m not. I’m saying we got to know each other very well, and that’s all I want to say as a gentleman. The rest is private and secret … up until now.”

The “bloody good fun” Rogerson enjoyed as a rogue cop came to a crashing halt in 1986 when he was finally dismissed from the service after the Police Tribunal sustained seven of nine misconduct charges against him.

But, in a strange twist, it was the plans Rogerson made on the expectation he would be jailed for the Drury matter that ultimately brought him undone. While the jury was deliberating on his fate, Rogerson was overheard telling his then wife Joy about his secret bank accounts.

Rogerson on the speaking circuit with Mark Jacko Jackson and Warwick Capper.image www.crimefiles.net

Rogerson on the speaking circuit with Mark “Jacko” Jackson and Warwick Capper. Photo: Rick Stevens

During his next trial, there was no sign of Chester Porter. Years later this silk explained.

“He told me quite a deal and when the facts came out about his secret banking accounts, it wasn’t completely consistent with what he told me. There could have been embarrassment,” Porter said.

In 1990, Rogerson was found guilty and jailed for conspiring to pervert the course of justice with two other men, including drug smuggler Nick Paltos, for organising bank accounts totalling $110,000 in false names. The accounts had been set up during the Drury trial

Anne Melocco leaving court after her husband was sentenced to two and a half years jail in 2005 image www.crimefiles.net

Anne Melocco leaving court after her husband was sentenced to two and a half years jail in 2005. Photo: Wade Laube

He spent nine months in jail before being acquitted on appeal. But, in 1992, the appeal was quashed and Rogerson returned to Berrima jail until his release in 1995.

Rogerson turned to scaffolding on his release from jail with a sideline in regaling pub audiences with his tales of his police activities. This included auctioning signed photos of himself standing near Lanfranchi’s body as it lay in the gutter in Dangar Place, Chippendale.

But within a decade Rogerson was back in jail after being convicted of lying about bribing a Liverpool Council official to obtain work.

Former detective Roger Rogerson is one of the most notorious officers ever to have served in the NSW Police image www.crimefiles.net

Rogerson had already committed perjury at the Police Integrity Commission before being told his house had been bugged for a long time and there were tapes that showed he was lying.

“It’s an absolute invasion of privacy!” he hissed from the witness box, demanding to know if he’d been taped having sex with his second wife Anne Melocco. “I want to know how good I am,” he said crossly.

Informed by counsel assisting David Frearson that there were no sex tapes because the commission was only interested in illegal activities, Rogerson retorted: “So there is no tapes there of me having sex, because that would be legal?”

He later muttered, “The sooner I leave this state the better.”

“Perhaps for other people as well,” Frearson deadpanned.

View to a kill: the death of Jamie Gao

Surveillance camera footage creates a detailed timeline of the 2014 killing of Jamie Gao.

Jamie Gao and Glen McNamara cctv stillEarly January, 2014 Jamie Gao and Glen McNamara meet at least 27 times in the lead-up to Gao’s death, often at the Meridian Hotel in Hurstville.

Rent a Space unit 803Early March, 2014  Roger Rogerson obtains keys to storage unit 803 at Rent a Space, Padstow, from a friend named Michael McGuire. Rogerson says he wanted to look at office furniture. Gao is eventually killed inside the shed.

April 27, 2014  A white Ford Falcon station wagon with number plates BV67PX is purchased ­at Outback Used Cars in Lethbridge Park. The car is later used to transport Gao’s body. Rogerson and McNamara deny involvement in the car’s acquisition, but Rogerson’s fingerprints are found on the receipt.

McNamara removes his 4.5 metre boat cctv stillMay 19, 2014  McNamara removes his 4.5 metre Quintrex boat from Hunter Self Storage at Taren Point without notifying staff. This is later used to dump Gao’s body at sea.

Rogerson and office chairs cctv stillMay 19, 3.15pm CCTV footage from Rent a Space captures Rogerson removing office chairs from storage unit 803 and placing them in the back of his silver Ford station wagon.

A white Nissan Silvia, consistant with Gao's car cctv stillMay 19, afternoon A white Nissan Silvia, consistent with Gao’s car, does a U-turn outside Rent a Space.

Jamie Gao and Glen McNamara Meridian Hotel, Hurstville cctv stillMay 19, 7.50pm  The night before Gao is killed, McNamara and Gao meet at the Meridian Hotel, Hurstville. The meeting lasts about 30 minutes.

McNamara walks to Cronulla Mall cctv stillMay 20, 11.37am McNamara uses a payphone in Cronulla Mall to call Gao. CCTV from Cold Rock Ice Creamery captures him walking towards the phone.

McNamara opening and shutting the door cctv stillMay 20, 1.17pm Rogerson and McNamara drive in separate cars to Rent a Space. McNamara is seen opening and closing the door four times in nine minutes.

Gao walking down Arab Road cctv stillMay 20, 1.35pm Gao is seen walking down Arab Road, Padstow, dressed in dark-coloured clothes, towards a white Ford station wagon that McNamara is in.

McNamara at front gate cctv stillMay 20, 1,42pm McNamara drives to the front gate of Rent a Space and enters the gate code – his hood is up and sunglasses are on.

Gao getting out of a white Ford station wagon cctv stillMay 20, 1.46pm Gao is seen getting out of the back of a white Ford station wagon and shielded by McNamara as he slips into storage unit 803. It is the last time he is seen alive.

Rogerson opens the door cctv stillMay 20, 1.49pm Rogerson opens the door to storage unit 803 exactly three minutes and 16 seconds after Gao and McNamara entered.

McNamara comes out of unit cctv stillMay 20, 2.03pm McNamara comes out of the storage unit, retrieves a silver Ocean & Earth surfboard bag from the white Ford station wagon, and returns to the storage unit.

McNamara and Rogerson are both seen dragging surfboard cover cctv stillMay 20, 2.18pm McNamara and Rogerson are seen dragging a surfboard cover containing Gao’s body, and load it into the boot of the white Ford station wagon.

Rogerson and McNamara are seen buying a two tonne chain block cctv stillMay 20, about 4pm Rogerson and McNamara are seen at Kennards Hire in Taren Point, buying a two-tonne chain block that was later used to lift Gao’s body into McNamara’s boat.

Rogerson and McNamara share a six pack of James Boag's cctv stillMay 20, about 5.15pm A few hours after the killing, Rogerson and McNamara share a six-pack of beer at McNamara’s unit in McDonald St, Cronulla. (McNamara claims he only helped to dispose of Gao’s body because his life was threatened by Rogerson.) 

Quintrex Boat being towed cctv stillMay 21, 7.28am A Quintrex boat carrying the body of Gao and a blue tarpaulin leaves McNamara’s Cronulla unit block.

McNamara and Rogerson are seen in the lift cctv stillMay 21, 7.32am McNamara and Rogerson are seen carrying fishing rods in the lift of McNamara’s unit block.

Quintrex boat being towed cctv stillMay 21, 11.05am After disposing of Gao’s body, McNamara brings his Quintrex boat back to Hunter Self Storage at Taren Point.

McNamara at Kmart cctv stillMay 22 McNamara says he was so worried when he found 3kg of ice in his car that he went to Kmart and bought two pillowslips, a measuring jug and a spoon. He claims this was to “seal” the drugs to stop them from exploding.

detectives arrest McNamaraMay 25, 6.30pm Robbery and Serious Crime Squad detectives arrest McNamara at a vehicle stop at Kyeemagh. He is refused bail and appears at Kogarah Local Court the following day.

Jamie Gao afloat inside a surfboard bag 2.5 kilomtres off the shoreMay 26 Fishermen spot the body of Jamie Gao inside a surfboard bag wrapped in blue tarpaulin about 2.5 kilometres offshore of Shelley Beach, Cronulla.

Rogerson arrested at Padstow Heights homeMay 27, 11am Police swoop on Rogerson’s Padstow Heights home. He is escorted out in handcuffs and taken to Bankstown police station, where he is refused bail.

www.policesearch.net

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Henry Sapiecha

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Two Women in ‘Sexy’ Outfits Seduce and Drug Prison Guards, Escape with 26 Prisoners

Two prison guards succumbed to one of the sexier breakout schemes in recent memory, when two women dressed in skimpy “sexy” police costumes showed up Thursday at a prison in Nova Mutum, a small Brazilian city near Cuiaba.

According to CNN, the two women managed to talk two prison guards into letting them inside. They seduced the guards and spiked their drinks in the process. The guards woke up the next morning, naked and handcuffed, with little to no memory of the night before. 26 prisoners had escaped while they slept, presumably aided by the mysterious sexy women.

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A spokesman for the Justice Secretariat of Mato Grosso, which oversees prisons, confirmed to CNN that officials found bottles of spiked whiskey and a pair of provocative, police-themed costumes next to the handcuffed guards, who were passed out.

“We assume that is what the women were wearing when they seduced the guards,” spokesman Willian Fidelis said.

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Since the escape, 11 of the missing inmates have been apprehended. It’s unclear as of yet who, of the 26 prisoners and two women, was behind the breakout.

“Nothing like this has ever happened,” Fidelis said. “Nova Mutum is a small city. People haven’t talked about anything else since it happened. Especially since 15 prisoners are still out there.”

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