Supergrass lawyer Nicola Gobbo claimed she refused to enter witness protection in 2009 because she was told it would be best for her safety if her mother and sister joined her.
In a lengthy letter to then-Victoria Police commissioner Simon Overland, Ms Gobbo threatened to sue if he did not deliver what other officers had promised.
She revealed she had been told the witness protection program Witsec would provide her with an “an unprecedented degree of flexibility” outside the usually strict regime.
There would also be “no budgetary constraints” regarding compensation, the woman known as Lawyer X claimed.
The supergrass lawyer moved from police informer to witness that year, after turning on former policeman Paul Dale when he was charged with the 2003 murder of Terence Hodson.
Mr Hodson and his wife were killed execution-style in their Kew home.
Charges against Mr Dale and hitman Rodney Collins were dropped when Ms Gobbo was later withdrawn as a witness and the other key witness, Carl Williams, was killed in prison.
In the letter to Mr Overland, released by the royal commission into her snitching, Ms Gobbo said she met with two people to discuss the Witsec terms, and discovered it wouldn’t be as relaxed as she’d been told.
She accused the duo making ill-informed and ridiculous suggestions about her future and showing a lack of understanding about her personal circumstances.
Ms Gobbo said they told her it would be “best for my health and safety” if her mother, then 72 years of age, and younger sister joined Witsec immediately.
Ms Gobbo’s sister Catherine Gobbo is also a barrister, still practising in Melbourne.
In the letter, she told Mr Overland that it was clear the program wasn’t designed for “a person with no criminal convictions, four university qualifications, a well-established career with limitless possibilities”.
“The very strict regime offered was rejected by me for numerous reasons, not the least of which is that it remains my intention to be in a position to look after my mother as her health declines and not to try to force either her or my sister into a program that cannot accommodate their needs, lifestyle or in my sister’s case, career prospects,” she wrote.
She also accused Mr Overland of attempting to legally cover Victoria Police should she be harmed.
A letter in August 2009 advised her that officers she had been in contact with since becoming a witness were no longer responsible for her safety because meeting with her put them at too much risk.
A follow-up a day later said her accommodation costs and a contribution to her living expenses would continue to be provided at Mr Overland’s discretion.
“I was informed that there is now to be no (redacted) unless I join Witsec. That is totally unacceptable to me and represents a fundamental breach of the representations, promises and assurances made to me by your organisation,” she said.
Ms Gobbo sued Victoria Police in 2010 and a confidential settlement was reached.
Australian Associated Press