Hunky Dory's signature fish and chips.

Hunky Dory's signature fish and chips.

A popular seafood chain accused of misleading customers by swapping "fish-of-the-day" dory fillets for cheap Vietnamese catfish is linked to notorious outlaw motorcycle gang the Mongols.

The Port Melbourne-based club, which has been the subject of recent police investigations into drugs, firearms and arson offences, is considered one of the most powerful bikie gangs in the state. Its members are already linked to businesses in the construction and tattooing industries.

Fairfax Media can reveal high-ranking Mongol member Sherif Derias has a significant financial interest in the lucrative Hunky Dory fish-and-chip chain, which operates seven outlets across Melbourne.

A busy day at Hunky Dory fish 'n' chips in Port Melbourne.

A busy day at Hunky Dory fish 'n' chips in Port Melbourne. Photo: Penny Stephens

While company records show no direct connection between Mr Derias and the business, police, underworld and seafood industry sources say the former body builder is "heavily involved" in the chain, which was founded by long time friend Greg Robotis.

Mr Derias' partner, Drina Jackanic, holds a 20 per cent share in Hunky Dory's Moonee Ponds outlet, which opened last year.

Ms Jackanic, a personal trainer, is a director of the business along with Mr Robotis and another man, company records show.

It is not the first time Mr Derias has failed to disclose his involvement in a business with the Australian Securities and Investments Commission.

Mr Derias, who claims to be a project manager and director of construction firm SGI Building Services on business network LinkedIn, is not listed on company documents filed with the corporate regulator.

SGI is owned and operated by another member of the Mongols, Tyrone Bell, who previously claimed the business "had no relationship" with the bikie gang. 

Several sources said Hunky Dory's flagship store in Bay Street is regularly visited by Mongol members from their Port Melbourne clubhouse who "eat for free".

Mr Robotis confirmed he had been friends with Mr Derias for more than 15 years but denied the senior Mongol was involved with the chain in any way.

"These are silly rumours, they don't make any sense. We are a legitimate business and I wouldn't allow it. We have worked too hard," Mr Robotis said.

He said he did not know if Mr Derias was a member of the Mongols.

 The revelations follow a story in Fairfax Media last week on the sale of Vietnamese catfish or basa, which is not displayed on the menu at Hunky Dory.

In that story, a source familiar with the Hunky Dory business said delivery invoices revealed one outlet routinely ordered up to 80 kilograms of basa fillets, about 25 kilograms of flake, and about 4 kilograms each of barramundi, blue grenadier, flathead and salmon. But there were no invoices for dory.


A source familiar with the business said staff had been instructed to to tell customers that the defrosted basa fillets were dory when sold as "fish-of-the-day".

The basa was sometimes described as 'H-Dory', the source said.

At the time, Mr Robotis said inexperienced staff could have been responsible for the confusion.


"We sell dory all the time," he said. We are not misrepresenting because at the end of the day, fish-of-the-day can be anything. We use all types of fish for fish of the day.

A Victoria Police spokeswoman said the force continued to monitor organised crime and its attempt to infiltrate legitimate business operations. 

"The organised crime aspect of outlaw motorcycle gangs is to exploit and look for vulnerabilities in various industries where gaps are evident and where money can be made", the police spokeswoman said.