The NSW Government, together with the NSW Police Force, has announced a $1 million reward for information into the murder of John Giannopoulos over 20 years ago.
The body of John Giannopoulos – then aged 72 – was located by two associates inside a unit on King Street, Newtown, about 10.30am on Wednesday 17 July 2002.
A post-mortem examination revealed he died from severe head and abdominal injuries.
Despite extensive investigations by local police and Homicide Squad detectives at the time, no one has been charged in relation to Mr Giannopoulos’ death.
In 2006, a Coronial Inquest found Mr Giannopoulos died on or about Tuesday 16 July 2002 from multiple injuries inflicted upon him by a person or persons unknown.
In 2018, a formal review of the case was conducted under the Homicide Squad’s Unsolved Homicide framework and a re-investigation commenced by detectives attached to Strike Force Westminster II.
As inquiries continue, police are renewing their appeal to the community to come forward with any information that may assist detectives with their investigations.
Minister for Police and Counter Terrorism, Yasmin Catley, hopes the $1 million NSW Government reward will provide an incentive for someone to come forward and open new avenues of inquiry for detectives.
“Despite having retired from work, John was an active member of the Greek community in Sydney when he was brutally beaten to death in his own home,” Minister Catley said.
“His senseless murder left his limited family in Australia without their uncle, and his friends and relatives in Greece seeking answers for over two decades.
“The Unsolved Homicide Unit exists so horrific crimes like this are not forgotten, and those responsible are held accountable – irrespective of the passage of time.”
Homicide Squad Commander, Detective Superintendent Danny Doherty, said it is hoped a fresh appeal for information will compliment several new leads identified following a recent forensic review.
“Numerous exhibits from John’s apartment have been re-examined and as a result, we have located an unknown male’s DNA sample on a drinking glass close to where his body was found,” Det Supt Doherty said.
“We’re also seeking to identify a woman believed to be of Indian Sub-Continental appearance who was captured on CCTV at a service station close to John’s apartment on the day of his murder.
“We believe this woman may have been in a relationship with John prior to his death, and possibly resided at an address on Audley Street at Petersham with a teenage daughter,” Det Supt Doherty said.
“I have no doubt there are people who knew Mr Giannopoulos who hold information about the circumstances of his death and are yet to come forward to police; now is the time to speak up.”
Investigations under Strike Force Westminster II are continuing.
Anyone with information that may assist Strike Force Westminster II investigators is urged to contact Crime Stoppers: 1800 333 000 or https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au. Information is treated in strict confidence. The public is reminded not to report information via NSW Police social media pages.