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Partner of feared Melbourne underworld kingpin George Marrogi revealed as Antonietta Mannella

The girlfriend of feared underworld trigger man George Marrogi has been unmasked for the first time amid accusations she helped the killer run his drug empire from behind bars. 

Antonietta Mannella, 28, smiled and gushed over her jailed lover during a brief court hearing in Melbourne on Monday. 

Daily Mail Australia can reveal Mannella has shared close ties with the Marrogi family, handing out food to the homeless on Melbourne’s streets for the killer’s charity, The NCF (Nurturing Christian Families) Company. 

Antonietta Mannella is accused of bringing in heroin and meth for her jailbird lover George Marrogi 

Antonietta Mannella is seen wearing a tshirt sporting an image of George Marrogi's dead sister Meshilin, of which a charity has been established in her memory

Antonietta Mannella is seen wearing a tshirt sporting an image of George Marrogi’s dead sister Meshilin, of which a charity has been established in her memory 

George Marrogi, 34, known as 'Cross' was sentenced in April over the murder of Kevin Ors. He is accused of running his drug empire from behind bars

George Marrogi, 34, known as ‘Cross’ was sentenced in April over the murder of Kevin Ors. He is accused of running his drug empire from behind bars

The charity, established by Marrogi after the death of his beloved sister Meshilin from complications related to Covid-19 last year, carries the same initials as his jailhouse gang Notorious Crime Family. 

Appearing in the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court via video link, Manella appeared behind protective glass within a dirty room somewhere inside Dame Phyllis Frost Centre. 

She was seen bashfully smiling as Marrogi appeared from his prison cell within Barwon Prison’s Acacia unity – a high security management unit used to accommodate dangerous prisoners.

George Marrogi's sister Meshilin, of which a charity has been established in her memory

George Marrogi’s sister Meshilin, of which a charity has been established in her memory

The usually stern-faced Marrogi, who is known as ‘Cross’ and serving 32 years behind bars for the cold blooded public execution of a drug rival, appeared equally as smitten, beaming with delight upon casting eyes on his distant lover.

Marrogi, 34, was sentenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria in April over the 2016 murder of drug dealer Kadir Ors, who was riddled with bullets in an execution-style hit under broad daylight. 

Mannella was charged that very month amid accusations she imported a massive shipment of heroin and methamphetamine into Australia in February on behalf of Marrogi’s gang. 

Police allege the one-time charity volunteer also attempted to bring in another drug haul in August last year. 

Marrogi has been charged over the February shipment and a further charge of intentionally directing the illegal activities of the NCF crime gang from jail – a charge which carries a 15-year jail term. 

The alleged crime duo’s lawyer Michael Kelly told the court he had engaged in ‘fruitful’ discussions with Crown prosecutors over resolving the pair’s matters, with a view of returning to court with a plea deal next month. 

Antonietta Mannella is led to jail by federal agents after her arrest in April

Antonietta Mannella is led to jail by federal agents after her arrest in April 

George Marrogi is allegedly running a crime gang, and a charity, from behind bars

George Marrogi is allegedly running a crime gang, and a charity, from behind bars 

In April, the Herald Sun reported Marrogi allegedly ran his gang by issuing Mannella instructions in code from Barwon while pretending to speak to a lawyer. 

Police also suggested they had thwarted an alleged hit commissioned by Marrogi from jail.  

Detectives charged 30 people as part of Operation Fuji, which began in October 2020. 

Acting Deputy Commissioner Bob Hill said the syndicate had access to military-style weapons, illicit drugs and unexplained wealth. 

‘In recent weeks Victoria Police received very, very credible information that members of the syndicate, including people currently in custody in our prison system, were actively planning to commit two murders. Certain proactive measures were taken by Victoria Police to disrupt this plan,’ he said at the time.

While Mr Hill said Operation Fuji had interviewed two people in relation to the plot, neither had been charged.

Police did not directly connect Marrogi to the planned killings and he too has not been charged over any such allegations.

Marrogi, who was born in Iraq and migrated to Australia in 1996, has already spent most of his life behind bars.

In total, Marrogi has spent 15 of last the 16 years behind bars, missing his own sister’s funeral last year. 

Ors, 24, had been lured to a meeting with Marrogi unaware that his number was about to be punched. 

CCTV captured from a carpark in Campbellfield, 13km north of Melbourne, showed Marrogi stalking his prey, who was accompanied by two mates. 

The court heard Marrogi chased down Ors, ignoring his friends altogether, before catching up with Ors outside an Officeworks. 

Marrogi shot his terrified victim seven times, hitting him in the back, leg, hip and buttocks. 

After blasting Ors, Marrogi made a wild escape from the scene as two of the dead man’s mates pursued him in another vehicle. 

Antonietta Mannella (left) and Marrogi's mum Madlin (centre) gave out food to the homeless in Melbourne. They are wearing tshirts in honour of Marrogi's sister, who died from Covid-19 complications while he was in jail

Antonietta Mannella (left) and Marrogi’s mum Madlin (centre) gave out food to the homeless in Melbourne. They are wearing tshirts in honour of Marrogi’s sister, who died from Covid-19 complications while he was in jail 

George Marrogi in happier times. He will spend most of his life behind bars

George Marrogi in happier times. He will spend most of his life behind bars 

The Marrogi clan: Jesse, Meshilin, mum Madlin and George

The Marrogi clan: Jesse, Meshilin, mum Madlin and George 

Even then, the ruthless killer fired even more shots at Ors as he lay bleeding out on the footpath. 

Police would later determine Marrogi had fired 13 rounds during the hit. 

In scenes emulating a Hollywood movie, the tyres of Marrogi’s Commodore were blasted out by his pursuers, forcing him to pull over in Broadmeadows. 

Undeterred, Marrogi exited the stricken vehicle and took aim at his pursuers, firing off another four rounds in their direction. 

While Marrogi escaped the chaos, police found the empty box of the bullets in the abandoned Commodore which Marrogi had sprayed all over Melbourne’s northern suburbs.

The gunman had also left his DNA on the box and the car was quickly linked directly back to a childhood mate of Marrogi. 

Police had also claimed a hoodie worn by the shooter was purchased the same day, and a receipt for a similar item of clothing was found at Marrogi’s home. 

The killer’s barrister had successfully puzzled two juries over the crucial DNA evidence, which he claimed had been transferred onto the incriminating bullet box by someone else. 

A third jury, who sat through a 16-day trial, would have no doubt it was Marrogi behind Ors’ murder. 

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