Not Your Typical Bikie War: 3 Charged Over Execution Killing
Former bikie boss Mick Hawi was shot in broad daylight outside a gym earlier this year in a paid 'hit'.
Police say they believe the alleged murder of former Comanchero boss Mahmoud 'Mick' Hawi was financially motivated.
Three men were arrested and charged over the execution-style killing of Hawi on Friday, two of whom police allege are members of the outlaw motorcycle gang Lone Wolf.
Police also allege the men were paid to kill Hawi.
"Like in a lot of these murders, it doesn't have to be a lot of money that is paid to people to conduct a murder," he said.
However, it's not a question of gangland warfare, said police, but about settling a financial debt.
Two men were arrested in the south Sydney suburb of Bexley, while a third was arrested in Balmain. Photo: NSW Police.
"We believe the motive was financial, rather than a typical dispute between outlaw motorcycle gangs," said NSW Police Assistant Commissioner Malcolm Lanyon.
"We will allege that there was a financial motive to his murder, and that his death was to prevent further money being paid to Mr Hawi."
Police wouldn't comment on how much money exchanged hands, or how much money was owed, but did say the debt was related to Hawi's construction business.
Yusuf Nagliogli, 37, and Ahmad Doudar, 38, were both arrested at a unit in Sydney city. Both men were taken to St George police station and charged with their involvement in Hawi's murder. Neither has yet applied for bail.
A search warrant was executed at the unit and items relevant to the investigation were seized.
A third man, aged 36, was arrested at Balmain, and charged with accessory after the fact to the murder of Hawi.
A search warrant was conducted at Brighton Le Sands nearby, and further items were seized.
"The fact that members of an outlaw motorcycle gang are currently before the court in relation to his murder, highlights the dangerousness and violence of those groups, and why the NSW Police Force is so committed to both preventing and disrupting the violence by the groups," said Lanyon.
Hawi was shot multiple times in broad daylight in February this year, in an attack that Lanyon said required "significant" planning.
CCTV footage released by police showed an unknown man wearing a face mask run up to to Hawi's luxury black car and fire several shots through the driver's window.
He was treated by paramedics and transported to St George Hospital in a critical condition, but later died.
Shortly after the shooting, a grey Mercedes-Benz was found torched a found a few streets away.
Due to the nature of the killing, there were very few key witnesses prepared to give statements, said Lanyon, meaning that police had to heavily rely on extensive CCTV footage, forensic evidence, and automatic number plate recognition technology.
He also said that the investigation was still ongoing, and that further arrests may be made.
Hawi was shot dead on February 15 this year, at the age of 37.
The former bikie boss had served time over the death of Hells Angels bikie associate Anthony Zervas during a brawl at Sydney Airport in 2008, but had his murder conviction and 28-year sentence overturned on appeal.
He was released in 2015.