Michael Drury

Shot former drug squad detective Michael Drury opens up on Roger Rogerson

Roger Rogerson was once charged with, but later acquitted of, conspiracy to murder police officer Michael Drury. More than three decades later, Drury shares his thoughts on Rogerson and how the murder of Jamie Gao has opened old wounds.

By Emma Partridge

Updated June 15, 2016 — 3.49pm first published May 3, 2015 — 2.47pm
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  • Rogerson and McNamara found guilty
  • Jamie Gao’s family speak
  • Rogerson’s notorious career

Pamela Drury was breastfeeding her seven-month-old baby girl, when her husband staggered into their Chatswood living room, his shirt drenched in blood.

He asked her to ring triple zero and begged her to take their two little girls to the bedroom and to stay there no matter what.

Even though his vision was blurred by blood, Michael Drury says he can still remember his wife’s face.

“You know what happened at the house that night; I’ll never forget it, you know, and the look on my wife’s face – what she saw was terrible,” he said.

Former police officer Michael Drury. Roger Rogerson was charged with conspiracy to murder Drury but found not guilty.

“All I wanted to do was give my little girls a kiss and a cuddle to stop them from crying before I went to hospital because I didn’t know whether I’d ever see them again.”

It was 6.10pm on June 6, 1984, when Drury was shot twice through his kitchen window.

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When the undercover drug squad officer woke from a coma about 12 days later, it did not take him long to figure out who he believed was behind his attempted murder.


There was no doubt in his mind that another policeman was involved – Roger Rogerson.

Roger Rogerson (left) and Glen McNamara during their trial for the murder of Jamie Gao during an 'inept' drug rip-off.

“Never in my wildest expectation would I have ever believed that a police officer would have been involved in that type of conspiracy – it was beyond belief for me. For everyone,” Drury told Fairfax Media in an exclusive interview while the Jamie Gao trial was under way.

In 1989, Rogerson was charged with conspiring with two criminals – Chris “Rent-a Kill” Flannery and Alan Williams – to murder Drury.

Victim: Jamie Gao.

After one of the highest profile court cases in Sydney’s history, Rogerson was acquitted.

About 30 years later, it took Drury’s breath away when he learnt that Rogerson had been charged with another serious crime – the murder of Gao, a university student.

On Wednesday, a jury found Rogerson, 75, and his co-accused Glen McNamara, 57, guilty of the 20-year-old’s murder and stealing the 2.78 kilograms of ice he had brought to sell them.

Towards the end of the trial, Drury spoke about the sadness that the case had dredged up for him.

“What saddens me greatly is that there is not one ounce of remorse that’s been shown by Rogerson or McNamara for what they did to that boy,” he said. “Not one ounce of remorse.

“It’s the absence of the remorse that I really find so sad.

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“What they did to that boy, it really is so disturbing, so disturbing.”

Despite believing Rogerson orchestrated his attempted murder, Drury says he feels sorry for him and his family.

“No one in this world could hurt Roger Rogerson as much as Roger Rogerson has hurt himself,” he said.

“There was a man who had the world at his feet with his vocation and he destroyed it all.”

Reflecting on his own case, Drury talks about why he believed Rogerson was at the heart of his attempted assassination.

“I always gave Rogerson the benefit of the doubt in the early hours but, as time went on, and I’m talking about two days or three, it became so sinister and so true in my mind that he was totally involved,” he said.

Drury was on what he thought was his deathbed when he told fellow police officers that he believed he had been shot because of the “Melbourne Job”.

He had been working undercover on an operation targeting heroin supply, which was partly conducted in Victoria.

His work resulted in charges being laid against Willliams, a drug kingpin.

Williams would later testify in the NSW Supreme Court that he attempted to bribe Drury through Rogerson to get his charges dropped.

Williams claimed that, when the repeated attempts at bribery were unsuccessful, he agreed to pay Flannery and Rogerson $50,000 each to kill Drury.

“I knew 100 per cent it was the Melbourne Job,” Drury said.

“I knew that Rogerson knew Alan Williams, because he had fronted me about me trying to throw my evidence and I said, ‘No, I rejected him.’ “

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When Williams went before the NSW Supreme Court more than 25 years ago, the indictment that was read to him said he “conspired with Christopher Flannery and Roger Rogerson to murder Michael Drury”.

Upon hearing this, Williams informed the court that he was guilty of the charge – which carries a maximum sentence of life in prison.

It’s late on a Thursday night and Drury sips on a coffee, and talks again about how sad he feels, reading about Rogerson’s involvement in Gao’s death.

“I find this an amazingly interesting case because I don’t believe Roger Rogerson joined the cops as a bad person,” Drury said.

“I give him credit and say he must have been a decent young man. But what went wrong and where did it go wrong to go from one extreme to the other?”