MacGill kidnapped to extort money for stolen drugs: Cops
One of the men charged over the extraordinary kidnapping of Stuart MacGill demanded the former Test cricketer pay him $150,000 because he blamed him for introducing him to a man - who turned out to be a drug dealer - who ripped him off in the sale of 2kg of cocaine, police will allege.
The Daily Telegraph understands police have been told MacGill was held responsible by a crime gang when the drug dealer either used counterfeit money, or did not pay at all, for the consignment of drugs.
The dealer has since vanished, according to sources involved in the case who said the use of counterfeit money in drug deals was not uncommon.
It is alleged MacGill became entangled in the drug deal, believed to be worth up to $2 million, through the brother of the ex-cricketer's partner Maria O'Meagher.
Marino Sotiropoulos, 46, a builder from Kyeemagh, has been charged with kidnapping, assault, participate in criminal group and commercial supply of more than 2kg of cocaine between April 1 and May 4.
Sotiropoulos allegedly first confronted MacGill on April 14 on a street corner near the former cricketer's home in Cremorne, where he was allegedly forced into a car and taken to an address in southwest Sydney.
Once at the rundown property at Bringelly, he was allegedly assaulted and threatened with a gun and told to come up with $150,000.
After about an hour he was dumped in Belmore suffering minor wounds. No money was ever paid.
A terrified MacGill then caught a taxi and spent the next six days moving between motels, including Pier One at the Rocks, before going to Chatswood Police Station on April 20 and informing officers of his ordeal.
Police have repeatedly said that MacGill, 50, is a victim and he will not be charged with any crime.
There is no suggestion of any wrongdoing on his part, nor is it suggested he knew about the drug deal.
MacGill was taken away from his north shore flat by police on Wednesday morning after the arrest of four men in relation to his alleged kidnapping. He has not returned to his home and is keeping a very low profile after the incident made worldwide headlines.
Police are also believed to have offered him protection.
One of those arrested, Richard Schaaf, 29, is allegedly a known associate of the Commanchero Outlaw Motor Cycle gang.
His brother, Frederick, 27, was also charged in relation to the kidnapping.
It will be alleged the brothers were "hired help'' to snatch MacGill. A fourth man, Son Minh Nguyen, 42, of Banksia, was also charged in relation to the kidnapping.
Originally published as MacGill kidnapped to extort money for stolen drugs: Cops