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Alleged DNA match in Hamze ‘murder plot’: court

A man has appeared in court charged with an alleged murder plot in Sydney’s gangland war. Picture: 7 News

Police allege the DNA of a man with suspected links to the Alameddine crime network was found inside two vehicles connected to an aborted hit on a rival last month, a court has heard.

Samuel John Rokomaqisa was arrested in a dawn raid in Sydney’s west last week and charged over an alleged plot to murder gangland figure Ibrahem Hamze.

Police allege the 31-year-old was one of two masked and armed men inside a stolen Mercedes that drove to a North Sydney street with the intention of shooting Mr Hamze dead on August 14, 2021.

Samuel John Rokomaqisa was charged over an alleged plot to murder gangland figure Ibrahem Hamze. Picture: 7 News
Samuel John Rokomaqisa was charged over an alleged plot to murder gangland figure Ibrahem Hamze. Picture: 7 News

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The Mercedes sped off after it was intercepted by a highway patrol car and was later found dumped in Cammeray, with the men allegedly escaping after carjacking a Toyota Camry from a 76-year-old man.

Mr Hamze is the younger brother of slain gangster Bilal Hamze, and the cousin of Brothers 4 Life founder Bassam Hamzy.

Mr Rokomaqisa appeared in Central Local Court for a bail application on Monday still wearing the dark Puma jumper he was seen in upon his arrest at Granville on Friday morning.

The court heard his DNA had been allegedly discovered in the Mercedes.

His DNA was also found in a jerry can inside the car after it was seized by police on August 14, and on the handbrake and gearstick of the Camry found a day later.

Defence lawyer Zemarai Khatiz said his client would be pleading not guilty to all charges before the court, including conspiracy to murder, police pursuit, being armed with intent to commit an indictable offence and armed robbery in company.

Ibrahem Hamze was the alleged target of masked and armed men last month. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Christian Gilles
Ibrahem Hamze was the alleged target of masked and armed men last month. Picture: NCA NewsWire / Christian Gilles

Mr Khatiz said the police fact sheet alleged Mr Rokomaqisa had “links to the Alameddine organised crime network” but the court heard there was no supporting evidence included in court documents.

He said the police case was built entirely on the alleged DNA traces and there was no other evidence to suggest his client was involved or even in the cars.

Identity would be a live issue should the matter proceed to trial, Mr Khatiz told the court.

“There are … no cell tower records to show that he was in the location at that time,” he said. “And most importantly, no fingerprints.

“The whole case is based on unreliable evidence in the form of DNA, which is transferable. Secondary DNA transfer.”

Lawyer Zemarai Khatiz represented Samuel Rokomaqisa on Monday. Picture: AAP Image/Joel Carrett
Lawyer Zemarai Khatiz represented Samuel Rokomaqisa on Monday. Picture: AAP Image/Joel Carrett

He argued that no judge would convict Mr Rokomaqisa of the serious charges on the strength of the evidence before the court.

Mr Khatiz asked for CCTV footage of the alleged carjacking to be played to the court, to show whether the men were wearing gloves.

If so, he argued, his client’s DNA could have been transferred from the gloves that he might have touched at an earlier stage.

Magistrate Clare Farnan said the allegations were “full of opinions” from police and “on the basis of these facts there’s nothing to support those opinions”.

The bail hearing continues.

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