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Men found not guilty over Mick Hawi shooting murder

A four-week trial was shown CCTV footage of Mr Hawi leaving the gym and climbing into his car, which was parked directly outside, before a black-clad gunman ran up to him and fired multiple shots through the open window.

The gunman and getaway driver then fled in a silver-grey Mercedes, which was abandoned and set alight in a nearby laneway, before they changed to a second getaway car.

CCTV shows two men running down Chandler Street, Rockdale, shortly after Mick Hawi was shot outside the Fitness First gym. Photo Supplied

CCTV shows two men running down Chandler Street, Rockdale, shortly after Mick Hawi was shot outside the Fitness First gym. Photo Supplied

Prosecutor Lou Lungo told the jury that the second car, a silver Toyota Aurion, was discovered by police a month after the shooting with a black balaclava in the front passenger seat footwell.

The balaclava was found to have “gunshot residue-like particles” and DNA consistent with Mr Nazlioglu, Mr Lungo said, while DNA consistent with Mr Eljaidi was found in the car’s interior.

In closing remarks, Mr Nazlioglu’s barrister Avni Djemal said Mr Hawi “wasn’t an everyday person” and did a lot of things that regular people wouldn’t understand, other than that they “didn’t look very legitimate”.

He said his client’s apparent motivation for the murder, that he had fallen out with Mr Hawi during a fishing trip, “just doesn’t make sense”.

“There is a lot of people – because of, possibly, the businesses Mr Hawi was conducting – that may have had motives,” Mr Djemal said.

Mr Eljaidi’s barrister David Dalton, SC, said his client did not have a motive to kill and was “far too tall” to be one of two men depicted on CCTV fleeing from the burning getaway car.

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“The evidence is overwhelming that he’s not guilty of this offence,” Mr Dalton said.

Mr Lungo described alternative theories for Mr Hawi’s death, such as tension between Mr Hawi and senior Comanchero Mark Buddle, as red herrings.

“Mark Buddle wasn’t even in the country,” Mr Lungo said.

During the trial, Mr Hawi’s widow Carolina Gonzales was shown a newspaper article which featured Mr Buddle declaring he was the leader of the Comancheros and “the f—ing commander of the world … no one is to touch another member or set up another chapter without my permission”.

Ms Gonzales said there had been tension between Mr Buddle and her husband, but it was “not bikie-related”.

The jury was also told about a possible dispute between Mr Hawi and property developer Eddie Hiragli, with Mr Nazlioglu’s barrister suggesting Mr Hawi was extorting $500,000 from the developer.

Ms Gonzales said Mr Haragli was not pressured to give money and the pair were friends.

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