Lover charged after body found in river

A man has been charged with murder 20 years after the death of Jason Palmer. source : NSW Police
A man has been charged with murder 20 years after the death of Jason Palmer. source : NSW Police

An allegedly “jealous, possessive” man has been charged with the murder of a “doting father” 20 years after the man’s body was found weighed down with rocks in a Sydney river.

Jason Palmer was reported missing on February 8, 2004, after he was last seen leaving his home on Baltimore St at Belfield two days prior.

Three weeks later, the 34-year-old’s body was found by children in a river at Menangle, in Sydney’s south, with multiple stab wounds and weighed down with rocks.

An initial investigation into Mr Palmer’s death did not identify a suspect, but a 2007 coronial inquest found he was stabbed to death in the Lakemba area.

The case was referred to the Unsolved Homicide Team for reinvestigation.

Police relaunched the investigation in 2022, which led to the arrest of 52-year-old Gofal Baziad, who police allege was having an affair with Mr Palmer’s wife, Renny Palmer.

She is not accused of any wrongdoing.

52-year-old Gofal Baziad, who police allege was having an affair with Jason Palmer’s wife as been charged with murder. Picture: NSW Police
52-year-old Gofal Baziad, who police allege was having an affair with Jason Palmer’s wife as been charged with murder. Picture: NSW Police

Mr Baziad was arrested on Monday and taken to Campbelltown Police Station where he was charged with murder.

Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Daniel Doherty, said police allege the Mr Baziad’s motive was to continue a relationship with Ms Palmer.

“We will allege in court that he was very jealous of her and very possessive and obsessed with her and to the point we believe, and we will show the facts, this had led him to commit what we will say was a very violent crime,” he told media on Tuesday.

“We believe it was a pure crime of passion … however it’s a horrendous murder.”

Supt Doherty said Mr Palmer and his wife had briefly separated, which is when the relationship between Mr Baziad and his wife began.

Mr Palmer and his wife got back together before he was allegedly murdered.

Police said the relationship between Mr Palmer’s wife and Mr Baziad continued after the death.

Police allege Mr Baziad was a “jealous, possessive” man. Picture: NSW Police
Police allege Mr Baziad was a “jealous, possessive” man. Picture: NSW Police

Mr Baziad had moved to Indonesia after Mr Palmer’s death with his wife, before they returned to Queensland.

They remained together for 14 years before the relationship ended in 2013.

Mr Baziad was looking for work in Ingleburn when he was arrested on Monday.

“All of a sudden the past has caught up with him. Not only caught up with him, it’s come back to haunt him,” Supt Doherty said.

He praised the work of investigators who managed to lay charges after two decades.

“It’s like finding a key to a door and going into a room and finding some further evidence, then finding another key to another door … the investigators should be commended for their tenacious investigation,” Supt Doherty said.