The behaviour of Australia’s most notorious inmate is so bad he can no longer have a deck of playing cards inside his cell, let alone receive visits from his family.
Bassam Hamzy is allowed just one phone call a week, one visit a fortnight – not from a family member – an hour of exercise each day and just five photos on his cell wall.
The 39-year-old’s deprived life inside Goulburn Supermax prison was laid bare as he represented himself before the New South Wales District Court on Thursday.
Hamzy has also lost the ability to have board games in his cell, cannot use a toasted sandwich machine or a kettle, and has lost the right to associate with other inmates.
But despite the crackdown on his already limited rights, the ISIS sympathiser has been allowed to keep his religious materials, which include a Koran and a prayer mat.
Bassam Hamzy appears via video link in the NSW District Court on Thursday (pictured)
The 39-year-old’s deprived life inside Goulburn Supermax prison was laid bare in court, as he complained about losing his privileges after a string of bad behaviour
When his face first popped up in the court via video link, Hamzy beamed a smile after noticing the 11 family members who had packed into the court to support him.
At times it appeared the convicted killer was on the verge of losing his composure as his family waved, pulled faces and even took photos of him up on the large screen.
Among the crowd was his father Khaled, who told Daily Mail Australia outside court it was the first time in more than a decade he had seen his son, a moment he described as ‘lovely’.
‘I haven’t seen him for nearly 12 or 13 years,’ Mr Hamzy, who himself was jailed in the 1990s on drugs charges, said.
‘The family’s the same, they are always knocked (back). They put in a request and it’s rejected… it’s really unjust, we are meant to be a democratic country.
‘His niece told him she wanted to come and visit him, but he said: ‘Look they are going to put me on box visits, it’s hard for me to see you or hug you or kiss you’.’
‘It was lovely to see him. The huge smile on his face – he was always a smiling boy, he had such a great sense of humour.
‘Now he has nothing, so of course he is always going to react and he’s been in jail for a long time so it changes you I am sure.
Hamzy’s father Khaled (pictured) told Daily Mail Australia it was the first time he had seen his son’s face in 12 years
A small army of family members packed out the court in supportof Hamzy as he represented himself in his NSW District Court appeal
At times it appeared the convicted killer was on the verge of losing his composure as his family members (pictured outside court) waved, pulled faces and even took photos of him up on the large screen
‘But they try to make him out to be like a monster. They are always pushing him into a corner and if you push a lion into a corner they will attack you.’
Hamzy’s strict jail conditions were revealed as part of his appeal against a conviction for assaulting a prison officer in August 2017.
That attack saw Hamzy – already regarded as an ‘extreme threat inmate’ – lose more of his minimal prison privileges.
But in addition to his privileges penalty Hamzy was also convicted externally over the assault in court.
Now the founder of the notorious Sydney gang ‘Brothers4Life’ claims the sentencing both in and out of prison is ‘invalid’.
‘If an inmate is punished externally they are not to be charged internally (as well),’ he told the court.
‘No other punishment was allowed to be imposed on me… it’s an abuse of power.’
NO GANGSTER’S PARADISE: WHAT BASSAM HAMZY HAS LOST IN JAIL
– Telephone calls
– Inmate associations
– Exercise out of cell
– Money transactions
– Buy up food
– Activities/buy ups
– Recreational materials
– Educational materials
– Religious materials
– Other property
Up to 2 per week
Contact visit a fortnight
One inmate at any time
Minimum two hours
$100 per week
Up to $50
Cards in cell
Up to 3 items at once
CSNSW* issued clothing
Maximum 20 photos
Up to 1 per week
Box visit a fortnight
Loss of privilege
Minimum one hour
$100 per week
Up to $40
Loss of privilege
Loss of privilege
Up to 1 item at once
CSNSW issued clothing
Maximum 5 photos
*CSNSW – Corrective Services New South Wales
The Supermax division of Goulburn prison is home to some of the nation’s worst criminals
Hamzy (pictured) claims he was unfairly punished for his assault of a prison officer in August 2017
But in his submissions to the court, Crown prosecutor Tony McCarthy claimed there was little merit in Hamzy’s self-organised argument.
‘What’s occurred, even at its worst, does not amount to an abuse of process,’ he told the court.
Hamzy first made the headlines after being convicted of the 1998 shooting murder of Kris Toumazis outside a Sydney nightclub.
During a night out at a bar on Oxford Street, one of Hamzy’s friends became involved in an altercation with a friend of Mr Toumazis.
As the two groups went their separate ways one of Hamzy’s friends kicked the car Mr Toumazis was in, causing he and his friends to retaliate.
It is then that Hamzy pulled out a gun and began shooting at Mr Toumazis and his two friends, fatally wounding the 18-year-old.
Since then, his time in the prison has been littered with headline-making incidents.
Hamzy (pictured) gives cameras the thumbs up as he walks out of court flanked by supporters
Before being convicted of the shooting murder of Kris Toumazis, a sullen-faced looking Hamzy opens the front door to his family home
A young Bassam Hamzy (right) sits on the couch with one of his uncles, years before he wound up in Goulburn Supermax
In 2008, he masterminded a methylamphetamine ring from Supermax, delivering more than a kilogram of the drug to Melbourne under the guise of a truck business.
Running the business through a phone hidden in his cell, Hamzy made 19,523 calls in just a matter of weeks.
That same year Hamzy used his smuggled phone to threaten a man who owed him $12,000.
‘Now, I’m about to cut your ears off. I told you I’m going to compensate myself,’ he told the man over the phone.
That same week Hamzy instructed an associate to threaten a different man:
‘(Tell him) I’m gunna cut all his fingers off… next time I’ll take his ears and make them into a necklace.’
Hamzy is first eligible for parole on June 1, 2035.
BASSAM HAMZY’S LIFE OF CRIME
May 31, 1998: Bassam Hamzy, then 19, shot an 18-year-old to death after an altercation outside a club in Oxford Street, Paddington.
He pulled a gun on an off-duty police officer, who fired a shot back at him.
January 29, 1999: Hamzy is arrested in Miami, Florida, over the shooting.
March 27, 1999: Police raid the family home and find a number of guns.
March 2002: Hamzy was sentenced to 21 years in jail.
May 2007: Hamzy established the Brothers 4 Life gang while in prison, successfully establishing a Bankstown chapter that became notorious for its violence and crime. He used a mobile phone that was passed between cells using dental floss to orchestrate the crimes, including drug deals and threatening people. During the period, he made upwards of 450 calls per day.
Hamzy received an additional 15 years added to his sentence for his involvement.
April 2017: Hamzy was believed to be linked to 15-year-old Brayden Dillon’s murder. Police believe he may have aided in the cover up of the attack, and calls made from a phone in his cell were later discovered to be linked to the hit man charged with Brayden’s murder.