Bassam Hamzy

Address: Sydney, NSW, Australia
Age: 34
Sex: Male
Ethnic background: Muslim


Date: 2001-06-24
Charges: Murder
Category: Assault/Violence/Murder
Court: Supreme Court of NSW
Judge: Justice Virginia Bell

Hamzy was found guilty in the Supreme Court on five charges related to a shooting incident outside a Darlinghurst nightclub, in Sydney on May 30, 1998.

Hamzy was found guilty of murdering Kris Toumazis.He was also found guilty of maliciously wounding Nicholas Lambos, maliciously discharging a pistol at Arthur Kasas, threatening to use an offensive weapon to avoid arrest and conspiring to murder Khaled Hammoud.

After the shootings Hamzy fled to Lebanon, the US, Belize and Colombia before being arrested in Miami and extradited back to Sydney to face the charges.

Date: May 2013
Charges: Drug offences, assaults and kidnapping
Category: Assault
Court: NSW Supreme Court
Judge: Judge Peter Zahra
Penalty: 14 years jail

NOTORIOUS criminal Bassam Hamzy was sentenced to another 14 years in prison for running a drug ring from within jail and orchestrating kidnappings and assaults.

The details of Hamzy's crimes and punishment were revealed in July 2013 after the NSW Court of Criminal Appeal lifted a suppression order on his sentence, which was handed down in May 2013.

In the sentence, Judge Peter Zahra said that while the convicted murderer was serving time in Lithgow jail he obtained a contraband mobile phone.

From May to June 2008, police listened in as Hamzy made more than 19,500 calls, directing the supply of massive amounts of drugs between Sydney and Melbourne, as well as orchestrating the intimidation of others.

In one call, Hamzy instructs an associate to get a knife and stand over a victim with the blade against his ear.

''Let me speak to him before you cut his ears off, so he can hear what I'm saying,'' Hamzy said.

In another, Hamzy directed an associate to go to the house of a man who owed him $25,000 and kick his door in and bash him.

After the associate tied the man up, Hamzy told him to tell the man:
''If I ever have to come up there again, I'm gunna cut all his fingers off ... Next time I'll take his ears and make them into a necklace''.

The court heard that the group run by Hamzy was made up of family members and associates, and that numerous intercepted phone calls related to creating an organisation similar to the Outlaw Motorcycle Gang.


Authorities describe Bassam Hamzy as Australia's most dangerous gangster

  • Bassam Hamzy is Australia's biggest gangster

  • Has supplied amphetamines and cannabis from behind bars

  • Converted inmates to Islam and organised jihad escape plot

  • Booked Qantas flights by credit card from his cell

  • Made 19,000 phone calls and ran a $250,000 drug ring

HE IS Australia's most powerful gangster and he has operated the crime syndicate Brothers 4 Life from behind bars.

With the arrest of two members of the gang he founded - one man on 40 drug and gang-related charges - there is speculation whether convicted murderer Bassam Hamzy is still pulling the strings from inside prison.

"Because of his nature and general unwillingness to cooperate with authorities, he's not the type of person who would have a conversation with us or answer questions," said an officer at the Rosehill Local Area Command (LAC) in Sydney.

"But these alleged offences are a very big deal."

Detectives from Rosehill LAC's Strike Force Cutlass have been investigating methylamphetamine (ice) dealing by the Brothers 4 Life gang.

Brothers 4 Life is involved in a gang war with one part of Sydney's Muslim community, with some members believed to have engaged in kidnaps, shootings, kneecappings and murder in NSW and interstate.

Hamzy, an al-Qaeda devotee, was originally jailed for the 1998 shooting murder of Kris Toumazis outside a Sydney nightclub and was subsequently convicted for conspiring to murder a witness against him.

He has been in jail since he was 18, but has an uncanny ability to manipulate an underworld crime operation while in custody.

Hamzy has confounded successive prison commissioners in NSW, who have called him "Australia's most dangerous gangster" and "very manipulative, very bright" with "a propensity to stand over people".

Hamzy is currently in the High Risk Management Unit, or Supermax prison in the NSW town of Goulburn, two hours southwest of Sydney. He is classified "Extreme High Risk Restricted", the highest security inmate classification in Australia.

Bassam Hamzy's Supermax cell card with details of approved items and diet. Picture: Adam Taylor

Bassam Hamzy’s Supermax cell card with details of approved items and diet. 

His contacts are restricted and his movements highly scrutinised. Yet he has managed to continue his criminal operations.

Hamzy was put under close watch after it was discovered in 2008 he had used a smuggled mobile phone to run a violent drug network from Lithgow jail.

From his cell, he reportedly orchestrated a shooting and two kidnappings in Melbourne and Adelaide.

Police taped a call in which he asked one of his kidnappers "can you slap him once in the face" and was told: "I've already done it cuz, I've already chopped him ... I've got blood everywhere, man."

Hamzy pleaded guilty to kidnapping and operating a sophisticated drug ring from within prison.

He had been transferred to Lithgow after prison authorities became concerned about his Islamic conversation activity and a 2007 mass jihadist escape plot.

He had been involved in the corruption of a prison officer and had passed unauthorised items to his solicitors.

The then Corrective Service NSW commissioner Ron Woodham transferred Hamzy to Goulburn's Supermax. Hamzy and another prisoner, Emad Sleiman, took legal action against Mr Woodham as compensation for their isolation within the prison system.

In Supermax his phone calls to family and friends are monitored and he is forbidden to speak in Arabic. However, late last year he was discovered making calls on a smuggled mobile phone while in transfer to a court appearance.

It is believed Hamzy used his powerful reputation to threaten other prisoners, and perhaps intimidate prison guards into providing him with communication lines to the outside world.

During a 2013 NSW Court of Criminal Appeal hearing Hamzy alleged the NSW Crime Commission had given him the green light to sell commercial quantities of drugs from within jail in return for helping them recover the stolen rocket launchers.

Police believe the Brothers 4 Life gang has joined forces on the outside with the Bandidos bikie gang in a violent drug war.