The owner of a Bankstown restaurant told police he was terrified when two men paid him a visit and wanted $50,000 in exchange for "protection." Then they told him about the Brothers 4 Life.
The gang was founded by Bassam Hamzy who was jailed for life in 2002 for the murder of Kris Toumazis and conspiring to kill a witness. The groups insignia, two crossed AK47 machine guns, is turning up at crime scenes across Sydney.
In December 2012, Bachir Aria was shot 8 times on the front lawn of his mother's house. In October Yehya Amoud was shot dead as he and his friend Bassam Hijazi sat in an expensive Mercedes bearing the number plate "B F L". In August, a 16 year old boy was shot in the leg in a driveway scrawled with the words "Brothers 4 Life." Youths wearing "B4L" T-shirts were involved in the violent protest in Martin Place last September and held up signs which read "Behead those who insult the prophet."
In 2008, police discovered that Hamzy had been making 400 calls a day from his Lithgow prison to co-ordinate the gang and run his $250,000-a-week drug ring. He is now in Goulburn Supermax.
Yesterday afternoon, Hamzy's aunt, whose son is a member of Brothers 4 Life, was shot four times in the legs as she opened the front door of her Auburn unit. Twenty minutes later, also in Auburn, shots were fired at the house next door to convicted drug dealer Hakan Goktas 39.
Police are angry that a senior member of the Brothers 4 Life gang was granted bail last week over a knee-capping at Bass Hill last month and the 24 year old victim had to go into hiding under police protection. When police are trying hard to encourage the Muslim community to come forward and testify against violence and intimidation, the system lets the perpetrators out.
Sydney used to be a quiet, peace-loving city until the Middle Eastern crime gangs moved in or did they just evolve? As everyday shootings become more common place, our beautiful city is being ruined by a small group of thugs who think they own the streets. And police seem incapable of doing anything about it.