|Roger Rogerson has alleged he and a friend were asked by Mark Standen to find $1m supposedly lent by drug dealers. Standen and his co-accused Bill Jalalaty face charges over Australia's largest ice cartel.|
Source: News Interactive
The Daily Telegraph can reveal that police believe Standen and his co-accused Bill Jalalaty lost the money they were allegedly given as a pre-payment to set up the Australian end of the deal to manufacture $120 million worth of the drug ice.
It can also be revealed that Standen's secret lover Louise Baker was not at her high-ranking job at ICAC yesterday as the fallout surrounding the biggest police corruption scandal in NSW deepened.
"It's an amazing story," Rogerson said last night.
According to a police intelligence report, the money was lent by the 10-man, one-woman criminal syndicate in the Netherlands to establish "business opportunities", but instead was gambled and lost in speculative investments.
As AFP agents from Operation Octans tracked the alleged drug conspirators for more than a year, they indirectly tapped into Sydney's underworld.
Telephone taps and surveillance recorded Rogerson and his friend Frank Wheeler, a former employee of the late standover men Tim Bristow and Michael "No Thumbs" Pestano, being approached to help find the lost $1 million investment.
Standen, 51, assistant director of the NSW Crime Commission, and Jalalaty, 45, a Sydney food wholesaler, were this week charged with conspiracy to import and supply a large quantity of drugs.
It is alleged they conspired to import ephedrine to manufacture the drug ice in Australia.
The conspiracy allegedly took place between 9am on June 1, 2006, and 2.45pm on June 2, 2008, the time of their arrests.
Mr Wheeler told The Daily Telegraph that Standen, who he knew through debt recovery work he had done with the NSW Crime Commission, contacted him in late 2006.
"He said I have a friend who has come to me and he's lost $1 million and there's nothing I can do to help him," he said.
He said he agreed that Standen could pass on his number.
Mr Wheeler said he was contacted by Jalalaty and they met in the Doncaster Hotel and agreed to help him track down the money Jalalaty told him he had given to someone to invest, expecting an interest rate of 15 per cent per month.
"He had stars in his eyes. He kept repeating that he was going to get back $2.4 million. This guy absconded with his money," Mr Wheeler said.
He said he believed Jalalaty had been ripped off by a "bird dog", people who target rich businessmen. Mr Wheeler said he has a signed document from the Australian man acknowledging the debt.
He said he traced the money to a UK commodities dealer and then to the Bahamas but Jalalaty could not afford to pay him the $50,000 to "take the boys" and go there and collect it.
"I know who the guy is. Mark Standen knew about the $1 million," Mr Wheeler alleged. He said he contacted Rogerson to ask his opinion on what to do.
"I never had any suspicion that it may have been drug money. If I had thought that, I would have let the authorities know," Mr Wheeler said.
Rogerson said he had no idea so much money was involved and had thought it was about $100,000.
"I have known Frank for years. Frank spoke to me about it and said he was trying to locate someone to speak to about getting the money back for this guy," Rogerson said.
"That's it in a nutshell.
"I had nothing to do with it."
In 2004, Mr Wheeler was involved in the attempted eviction of the Nam family from a farm near Wellington in the state's Central West. He was then working for Mr Pestano.
The Nams claimed they were threatened and Tim Nam shot Mr Pestano dead.