"He went to that meeting and went into that storage shed thinking that what was to happen would shortly make him very rich," the Crown Prosecutor said.
"Instead he was shot and killed and dragged to the back of the station wagon and dumped at sea."
The victim was Jamie Gao, a 20-year-old student and would-be drug dealer who was hoping to make his fortune in a "massive" one-off drug deal.
Instead, the NSW Supreme Court heard on Monday, Mr Gao was murdered by the two men who were supposed to be the buyers in the deal – Roger Rogerson and Glen McNamara.
In his opening address to the pair's murder trial, Crown Prosecutor Chris Maxwell, QC, said it was an "undeniable fact" that Mr Gao was shot twice in a rented storage shed in the south-west Sydney suburb of Padstow on the afternoon of May 20, 2014.
Six days later the young man's body was found floating in the sea off Cronulla inside a surfboard cover and wrapped in blue plastic.
The members of the jury were shown still images from CCTV footage which allegedly showed that on May 20 Mr McNamara and Mr Gao went into the unlit shed at 1.46pm and that Mr Rogerson joined them at 2.10pm.
Eight minutes later the two accused emerged dragging a silver surfboard cover allegedly containing Mr Gao's body.
"What is abundantly clear is that Mr Gao was shot dead behind the closed doors at a point in time during that 30 minutes," Mr Maxwell said.
"It's clear, you might think, that Jamie Gao was shot by one of the accused. It will become apparent that the prosecution cannot establish which accused was the shooter. But it doesn't have to prove which one was the killer."
He said that this was because Mr Rogerson and Mr McNamara were part of a joint criminal enterprise to murder Mr Gao and then steal the 2.78kg of methyl amphetamine he had brought to sell to them.
After the murder, police allegedly found the drugs in Mr McNamara's car wrapped in two brown pillow cases.
Both Mr Rogerson and Mr McNamara have been charged with commercial drug supply in addition to murder.
Mr Rogerson is charged in the alternative of accessory to murder.
Both accused have pleaded not guilty to all charges against them.
Mr Maxwell said that Mr McNamara had been hired as a private investigator by Mr Gao's friends to help them fight their own drugs charges and that Mr Gao had acted as a Cantonese interpreter for their meetings.
Not long after, Mr Gao had allegedly told his cousin that "the deal with Glen was going to be massive" and that he was "going to be rich soon".
The trial, before Justice Geoffrey Bellew, continues.