Murder and the Law

By Scott Feeney and Jimmy Singh.

 

It is reported that Ahmad Doudar has been charged with murder for being the alleged mastermind in the daylight execution-style killing of former bikie boss Mahmoud “Mick” Hawi.

Former one time National Comanchero bikie boss Mr Hawi was shot in the head at close range.

It is alleged that the 38-year-old Lone Wolf bikie member Mr Doudar planned the hit and carried it out along with fellow gang member, 37-year-old Yusuf Guney Nazlioglu.

The pair resided in the infamous toaster building in Circular Quay.

While it’s alleged that the gunman was Mr Nazlioglu, multiple gun shots were fired at Mr Hawi while he sat in his luxury car outside the Rockdale Fitness First gym on 12th of February 2018.

The same morning as the execution, the pair’s shared flat was raided by anti-Bikie officers to execute a routine warrant on Mr Doudar at 5:30am. However, the two had left just minutes earlier.

It is alleged the flatmates had set up the execution.

In the moments leading up to the execution, cars were strategically placed for a swift getaway. Mr. Hawi was followed, while the gym that Mr. Hawi regularly attended to was also carefully monitored.

By lunchtime Mr Hawi was dead.

The motive for the killing is alleged to have been an unsettled debt, amounting to over $300,000 owed to Mr Hawi’s scaffolding business.

Mr Nazlioglu has also been charged with murder.

Jamal El Jaidi, 31, has been accused of driving the getaway vehicle.

 

The Evidence

A burned-out Mercedes station wagon was found dumped near the Rockdale gym.

It is alleged this is the burnt out get-away car, used to flee the crime scene.

A team of up to 40 police officers thoroughly searched the streets for CCTV footage. They were able to track the car back to an abandoned house owned by Mr Doudar’s brother.

Detectives were able to then identify the second getaway car, arriving just after the shooting.

The prosecution allege they have been able to track the pairs movements both before and after the murder.

Later, a second car was found just over 10kms away in the suburb of Beaconsfield as it was being loaded onto a tow truck by Moustafa Salami who has been charged with being an accessory after the fact.

A balaclava was found inside the vehicle. Under normal circumstances there would be no trace of evidence left after an extended period. Because it was sealed inside the vehicle, DNA and gunshot residue was preserved.

The DNA found on the balaclava allegedly matches Mr Nazlioglu.

The gunman seen in the CCTV footage was standing close enough to the car to have been covered with residue from the gunshots.

A firearm was also allegedly found in the garage used to store one of the getaway cars.

Voice recordings have been presented where police allege that 11 days before the shooting, Mr Doudar visited imprisoned high-ranking bikie Hassan “Faks” Fakhreddine.

Mr Fakhreddine has reportedly suggested that Mr Doudar get involved in resolving the dispute between Hawi and some property developers.

Mr Doudar made another prison visit just shortly after the shooting.

 

Denied Bail

Mr Doudar’s barrister Gregory James QC is reported saying that the case against his client is circumstantial and “weak”.

Mr Doudar could spend up to two years in custody while awaiting his trial.

He also questioned on Wednesday how video footage could prove his client arranged the allegedly debt-fuelled murder.

However, Justice Peter Garling said there was a lack of an innocent explanation for all the evidence presented, and circumstantial evidence in isolation may appear weak “but when considered together, it gains greater weight and significance”

Justice Garling said “Given … his disregard of societal behavioural norms – otherwise known as the law – and his flagrant disregard of legal obligations, there is a very real risk which cannot be mitigated that he will commit further serious offences and endanger members of the public”.

Notwithstanding the offer of a two million dollars surety for Hawi’s release on bail, Mr. Doudar was refused bail by the Court.

The court heard Doudar has been incarcerated for an extended period for commercial drug supply already. He has been convicted of maliciously inflicting grievous bodily harm, break and enter with intent to steal and firing a firearm in a public place.

Further to this, parole has been revoked at least twice, and violent charges were dismissed under mental health grounds.

These were also significant factors that the court took into account as to reasons for refusing bail.

For more details on bail, click on our link here on the law on bail applications in NSW.

Murder and the Law

Anyone guilty of committing the offence of murder in NSW will be left to face a maximum sentence of up to life in jail.

Life imprisonment refers to the natural life of an offender.

Having said that, a sentencing Judge can exercise discretion to impose a life term of imprisonment if the prosecution prove that the extent of criminality for the offending conduct in any given case was so extreme that only a life prison sentence would be appropriate in light of the purposes of punishing an offender under the law.

In considering the extent of criminality, a sentencing Judge will consider factors such as extent of premeditation, violence used, and provocation used if any.

On the other hand, a sentencing Judge will also consider the offenders personal situation, such as extent of remorse, insight, prospects of rehabilitation and any mental health issues.

If a sentencing Judge determines that it would not be appropriate to impose a term of life imprisonment to an offender for a murder charge, a parole and non-parole period will be imposed.

The non-parole period represents the period of full-time prison an offender will be required to face before he/she can be eligible for release on parole back into the community.

Generally, the greater the prospects of rehabilitation a court finds for a convicted murderer the more inclined a Judge will be to impose a greater parole period with a shorter non-parole period.

Currently, for a murder charge, there is a standard 20-years non-parole period for murder which a sentencing Judge can consider imposing if the offence is assessed as being in the mid-range of objective seriousness for murder offences.

The 20-years standard non-parole period for this offence is not a compulsory requirement to be imposed. It is used only as a guide for the sentencing Judge in order to come to an appropriate sentence.

A person will be guilty of murder in NSW if the prosecution can prove each of the following elements of this crime beyond reasonable doubt in court:

  1. The accused person’s voluntary conduct caused the death of the victim; and
  2. The accused person, at the same time, either:
    • Intended to cause really serious injury or permanent or serious disfigurement to the victim; or
    • Intended to kill the victim; or
    • Realised the probability that his/her conduct would cause death; or
    • Where the accused person caused the victim’s death while he/she was committing a crime which carries under the law a maximum penalty of 25-years or more.

A person charged with murder will be found not guilty if the prosecution fails to prove any one of the above 2 elements in court. This will result in an acquittal of the accused.

If any of the following defences apply, a person charged with murder will be found not guilty and acquitted:

  • The accused person acted in self-defence; or
  • Mental Health Defence, where the accused person was suffering a certain mental illness which can result in a not guilty verdict for the charge of murder; or
  • The accused person acted as a result of involuntarily consuming alcohol or drugs that caused him/her to be unable to form the requisite element of intention; or
  • The accused person acted under a necessity or duress.

A charge of murder is taken extremely seriously by the courts. It is very important to get urgent reliable advice from a specialist criminal defence lawyer.

Our Sydney criminal defence lawyers appear in all courts with offices in Sydney city, Parramatta and 6 other locations in NSW. We are available on (02) 8606 2218.

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