A TOTAL of $300,000 is being offered by NSW Police to anyone with information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or people responsible for the death of three gay men in Sydney’s eastern suburbs in the 1980s.
It is believed the attacks were part of a series of “gay hate crimes” and could be interlinked due to the location the three victims were seen last – Tamarama.
After being declared missing, his car keys were discovered two days later below the cliff tops at Marks Park, Tamarama. His body was never found.
Almost six months later, the body of bartender John Russell, 31, was found at the bottom of the cliff top at Marks Park.
Both cases came almost half a decade after French national Giles Mattaini, 27, disappeared. He was also last seen walking in Tamarama. However, he was not declared missing – and subsequently deceased – until 2002.
At the time, the Coroner’s report had concluded that both Australian men had fallen accidentally to their deaths in 1989.
However, the circumstances surrounding the three incidents have been the subject of a review by the Homicide Squad’s Unsolved Homicide Team in recent years.
Homicide Squad Commander detective superintendent Michael Willing today said the matters had been reviewed based on the Coroner’s findings that they were suspicious in nature and possibly the result of gay hate-related crimes.
“We believe there are still people in the community who know what happened to these men and we hope these rewards will be an incentive for those people to come forward,” Willing said.
Just recently in April, the State Coroner issued a third inquest into the death of gay US-born mathematics prodigy Scott Johnson, whose body was found below a cliff top in Manly, 1988.
His death was also initially viewed as a suicide by authorities, but coronial findings surrounding the death of the men in Tamarama has seen Johnson’s family push for further answers in what they, too, believe was a gay-hate crime.
The reward for each Tamarama case is $100,000.
Police encourage anyone with information to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.