Bikie boss jailed but may not have struck murdered man
11 Apr, 2012 03:00 AM
BIKIE boss Mahmoud ''Mick'' Hawi has been sentenced to at least 21 years jail for murdering a rival gang member in the 2009 Sydney Airport brawl, despite the sentencing judge finding he may not have actually inflicted a single blow on the victim.
Hawi, until recently the powerful national president of the Comanchero motorcycle clubs, sat expressionless in the dock as NSW Supreme Court Justice Robert Allan Hulme ordered that he not be released until at least November 2030 for the murder of Hells Angels associate Anthony Zervas during the brawl.
The 31-year-old was found guilty of the crime in November last year following a marathon nine-month trial in which six Comanchero were charged with murder but only he was convicted.
Justice Hulme described the fight, during which 29-year-old Zervas was bludgeoned with metal bollards, stabbed and stomped on in the Qantas domestic terminal, as a ''shocking and vicious'' crime which would ''live long'' in the memories of those who witnessed it.
''The deceased was killed in an act of retribution because he had the temerity to attack the president of the Comanchero - nobody was going to get away with doing that, least of all someone of the deceased's stature,'' he said.
Despite this, Justice Hulme said he was not satisfied that Hawi had inflicted the fatal blow on the 29-year-old or, in fact, ''inflicted any blows at all''.
Rather his guilt lay in being part of a broader assault or ''simply being there when it was occurring''.
Justice Hulme said that, as national president of the hierarchical Comanchero, Hawi had absolute power and that his presence ''would undoubtedly have had the effect of authorising and approving the actions of the man who bludgeoned Anthony Zervas to death''.
He also said that Hawi had had a prominent role in the events leading up to the brawl, particularly the mid-flight confrontation with the Hells Angels boss, Derek Wainohu, which preceded it.
Upon discovering that his rival was onboard, Hawi walked up and down the plane glaring at him before instructing two of his subordinates to ''get the guys to meet us at the other end''.
The violence began almost immediately after the plane landed, and flared into a full-blown brawl when 12 Comanchero confronted five Hells Angels in the middle of the busy terminal.
Hawi was sentenced to a maximum of 28 years in prison with a non-parole period of 21 years and six months backdated to May 2009 when he was first jailed.
Mr Zervas's mother, Frederica Bromwich, broke down in court after the sentence was read and nearly fainted outside court as - flanked by her daughters - she addressed the media.
''No punishment is enough for the loss of my son,'' she said.