Shane Barker murder link to fox carcass

Shane Barker

Shane Barker

Windermere independent MLC Ivan Dean has written to the state’s top cops, alleging another key piece of fox evidence was faked - and Mr Dean believes it's linked to the cold case murder of Shane Barker.

The letter - sent to Commissioner Darren Hine and Assistant Commissioner Glenn Frame earlier this month - claims the Glen Esk Road fox, found at Conara in 2006, was killed in Victoria and imported by a now-convicted drug trafficker.

The letter goes on to suggest that Mr Barker became aware of the hoax and was prepared to snitch on the culprit, which ultimately led to his rifle murder at Campbell Town in 2009.

Mr Dean said he interviewed an informant who told him he was involved in transporting the carcass from Briagolong, 240 kilometres east of Melbourne, to Tasmania on the Spirit of Tasmania.

The Glen Esk Road fox at DPIPWE's Mt Pleasant Laboratory in August 2006.

The Glen Esk Road fox at DPIPWE's Mt Pleasant Laboratory in August 2006.

"Several independent lines of investigation have corroborated the version of events described," Mr Dean's letter reads.

"I had received information back in about 2008/2009 that people at Campbell Town knew who had planted the Glen Esk Road fox but I was not then able to obtain confirmation of this fact. 

"It is understood Shane Barker was a keen shooter and further that he was known to (the importer). They had some common interests relative (to) hunting and firearms. It is further believed Shane Barker would have been aware of (the importer’s) involvement in the ‘Glen Esk Fox – Setup’.

"In 2006 (the importer) owned a white Toyota Hilux twin cab ute with a canopy and it is this vehicle which the informant claims was used to transfer the dead fox from Victoria to Tasmania. I am advised the vehicle remained in his possession in 2009 and that it remains with (him) to this date."

Police have long suspected that the owner of a white Toyota Hilux with a canopy and Sunraysia mag wheels, seen outside the Barker house the morning of his murder, holds the key to solving the mystery.

Police scour the site of Shane Barker's 2009 murder at Campbell Town in August last year.

Police scour the site of Shane Barker's 2009 murder at Campbell Town in August last year.

It is understood at least two people from Briagolong have come forward and corroborated the importation theory.

Asked about the letter, Mr Dean said he was “extremely disappointed the report was leaked.”

“It does have the potential to disrupt a police investigation,” he said.

Tasmania Police declined to comment on the Barker investigation, which was last year handed to the state's Cold Case Unit.