In life, underworld enforcer Nabil Maghnie was known as ‘The Mad Leb’. In death, it was Baba.
Hundreds of mourners endured blazing heat and acrid smoke as they gathered at a grave site at Northern Memorial Park, in Melbourne’s north, to farewell the feared gangster.
Maghnie was gunned down last Thursday night in Epping amid claims he had been trying to stand over someone at a property on Dalton Rd.
Mourners gather to pay their respects to fallen gangster Nabil Maghnie, who was gunned down in Melbourne last week
Nabil Maghnie was shot dead after an incident in Epping in northern Melbourne
Burly men stand over the coffin of slain gangster Nabil Maghnie
Two other men, one of them his son Abbas, were wounded in the incident.
Daily Mail Australia has been told Maghnie may have confronted the occupant of the property over a dispute about a damaged vehicle.
It is understood a family member of Maghnie was involved in a minor bingle, which prompted the notorious stand over man to intervene.
Maghnie is then believed to have attacked the householder before someone else pulled out a gun and shot him dead.
Those that knew Maghnie claimed he had been living the high life on borrowed time in the years before his bloody demise.
None-the-less, mourners dressed in black gathered to pay their respects to the fiercely loyal father and friend.
With a floral tribute spelling out the word ‘BABA’, Maghnie’s casket was placed on the searing bitumen of the car park as friends and family prayed over his body.
Among the mourners was Peter Melasecca – the son of Maghnie’s barrister Rob, who offered a touching tribute to his client on Facebook upon learning of his client’s death.
Hundreds of mourners endured intense heat to farewell Nabil Maghnie in Melbourne on Wednesday
Mourners pray over the body of Nabil Maghnie, which was placed in the car park
On Tuesday, Magnie’s sister paid tribute to him on Facebook by posting a video of him singing ‘Ride Like the Wind’ by Christopher Cross in the passenger seat of a car.
The 44-year-old is seen screaming the lyrics while using an arm rest as a microphone and dancing in his seat as the car travels through the countryside.
Maghnie became legendary in Melbourne’s criminal underworld when he infamously drove himself to hospital after being shot in the head in 2016.
In 2011, the married father was the victim of another non-fatal shooting at Broadmeadows.
He was being investigated by police over a double shooting at the Love Machine nightclub in Prahan in April last year and was prime suspect in an attempted hit on notorious Mongol’s bikie Toby Mitchell.
Maghnie was also on bail for serious driving offences at the time of his death after crashing his Range Rover at more than 200km/h while high on booze and cocaine last year.
Ironically, had Maghnie not been granted bail, he might well still be alive today.
The charismatic criminal seemed to have a knack at convincing judges and magistrates’ that his risk to the community could be contained. ‘
He had received bail time and time again over his long criminal career.
But in the weeks before his death, anyone unlucky enough to be in Maghnie’s company had began to feel uncomfortable.
Mourners gathered to pay their respects to dead gangster Nabil Maghnie. He was killed in a hail of bullets in Melbourne last week
Nabil Maghnie wanted people to know he was a suspect in the shooting of feared bikie enforcer Toby Mitchell
Killer Gavin Preston took Nabil Maghnie under his wing and showed him the criminal ropes that ultimately led to his demise
Born in the 70s, Maghnie came from a broken family and was institutionalised as a child.
Living under the eye of the state in those days was particularly tough, and Maghnie found positive male influences in the darkest of places.
It was under state care he met his mentor, his best mate and a bloke he would later revere as a father figure.
Gavin Preston has been in and out of prison most of his adult life and has convictions for shocking violence offences stretching back to 1991.
In 2015, Preston beat a murder charge — and a possible life sentence — by pleading guilty to the lesser offence of defensive homicide over the 2012 killing of drug dealer Adam Khoury.
Preston was also once best mates with feared Prisoner of War ‘general’ Matthew Johnson, who murdered Melbourne gangster Carl Williams inside jail in 2010, until they fell out over a jail house spat.
Maghnie (pictured) was pronounced dead at the scene, while two others were taken to hospital with gunshot wounds
Forensic police attend the scene of Maghnie’s shooting death in Epping in northern Melbourne
At the time of his death, Maghnie’s rap sheet spanned three computer screens and contained 34 entries.
His first stint in an adult prison dated back to 1995 when he was jailed for four months over a wild brawl that saw him convicted of a swag of charges including assault, behaving in a riotous manner and driving dangerously.
Maghnie leaving Melbourne Magistrates Court in July after being granted bail following a dramatic car crash while under the influence of drugs and alcohol in 2019
Nabil Maghnie had close links to feared prison gang Prisoners Of War, which is headed by Carl Williams’ killer Matthew Johnson (pictured)
Carl Williams reads a copy of the newspaper in jail as Matthew Johnson prepares to beat his brains in
Sources have told Daily Mail Australia that in his later years, drugs had consumed Maghnie and that he was high most days.
In 2016, he was convicted of drug offences, but walked with a fine.
He spent most of 2018 behind bars after being convicted of a nasty car crash, which saw him assault a police officer.
He had been free on bail, was unlicensed, carrying drugs and a weapon.
By May last year, his life was out of control.
Juiced-up to his eyeballs on cocaine, he hit a roundabout north of Melbourne, became airborne, struck another car and then careened into a paddock.
Maghnie collapsed at the scene and was taken to hospital, where a cocktail of drugs was found in his system.
In September he was granted bail after indicating to the court that he planned to plead guilty to the charges.
He was cut loose so he could attend drug rehab.
Victoria Police detectives are continuing to investigate the circumstances around the shooting.