'I Hate My Last Name': Mert Ney's Family Slams His 'Despicable' Actions
The family of Sydney stabbing suspect Mert Ney has given an emotional apology to his alleged victims, saying "a million times sorry" for his actions.
Ney, 20 years old from Marayong in western Sydney, has been arrested after a woman was killed and another injured in a stabbing attack in the CBD on Tuesday.
Police said he was a "lone actor" and had a history of mental health issues. Ney's family held grave concerns for his welfare and police had taken a report based on a domestic violence situation.
Ney was listed in the police system as someone to "keep a lookout for" as both a missing person and someone who was involved in domestic violence, it was revealed on Wednesday. Police have established Strike Force Lalchere to investigate the alleged Sydney CBD stabbings. The strike force's inquires will be supported by the Terrorism Squad.
A woman who identified herself as his relative spoke to media, claiming he had experienced "a steep descent into insanity" in recent times, and said the family "thought he was a threat to himself".
The woman, who asked not to be identified, apologised to the victims of the stabbing and called Ney's alleged actions "despicable".
"I just want to say sorry, she was younger than me," the woman said, referring to the 24-year-old victim who died.
"All the words I can say aren't ever going to bring her back. I want to say I'm really sorry. She was defenceless."
I just want to say sorry to the family, sorry a million times, sorry for everything. We didn't know he would do this.
The woman said she was "not on good terms" with Ney, saying their relationship was "estranged", and that she had not seen him since he left the family home last Wednesday.
She also said her family had no links to Islam, despite Ney appearing to yell "allahu akbar" in Sydney streets prior to his arrest.
"I saw a lot of news articles saying terrorism, but our family doesn't practise Islam. I know I'm dark skinned and I look like I'm from the Middle East, that's going to be an obvious thing," she said.
"But I'm not Islamic, my mum's not Islamic, my sister's not Islamic, my dad's probably straight up atheist. We've got nothing to do with Islam at all."
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She said she was "disgusted" by reports of her brother's alleged actions.
"I hate my last name. If someone in your family did this, how would you feel?" she asked journalists.
"It feels bad to be associated with that... If you heard a family member had done those atrocities, you'd also feel so dirty and guilty."
Police executed two search warrants at properties in Blacktown and Marayong, where they seized additional electronic devices that will undergo forensic testing.
Ney's family home is located at Marayong in Sydney's west, where he lives with his family. Neighbours and others that know Ney described him as a quiet person, who kept to himself and wasn't overly social.
Ney attended Blacktown Boys High School and Marayong Public School. A former peer from the school in Marayong told The Daily Telegraph he was a “weird” loner.