Tony Mokbel

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Tony Mokbel
Mokbel arrest.jpg
Mokbel, wearing a wig, after his arrest in Greece.
Antonios Sajih Mokbel

(1965-08-11) 11 August 1965 (age 53)
Criminal statusImprisoned (Australia)
Conviction(s)Drug trafficking, drug importation
Criminal penalty30 years imprisonment

Antonios Sajih Mokbel (Arabic: طوني مقبل) (born 11 August 1965) is an Australian criminal who has been convicted for a number of offences, most prominently commercial drug trafficking. He has spent most of his life in Melbourne, Australia. Mokbel was a fugitive until his recapture in Athens, Greece, on 5 June 2007. Operation Purana alleged that he is the mastermind behind the Melbourne amphetamines trade. He has been linked to Carl Williams as well as the killing of several victims of the Melbourne gangland war. He disappeared from Melbourne while on trial in March 2006, and he was arrested by Greek police in Athens, Greece, on 5 June 2007.[2] Prior to his arrest, there was a $1 million bounty for information leading to his capture.[3] According to Victoria Police, this reward still stands for the person who tipped off the police on his whereabouts.[4]


It has been alleged that in late 2002 there was a meeting of more than ten Melbourne organised crime figures in Carlton. At that meeting, it is said that Mokbel was beaten, nearly to death, by Nik 'The Russian' Radev's bodyguard, Western Australian Troy Mercanti, who was a member of the Coffin Cheaters motorcycle gang.[5] Andrew 'Benji' Veniamin was ordered by his then close associate, Dominic 'Mick' Gatto, to take Mokbel to a female doctor. In the following couple of weeks, Mick Gatto was told that Veniamin and Mokbel became close allies.

He was reported to have paid convicted murderers Keith Faure and Evangelos Goussis A$150,000 for the murder of Lewis Moran, the 23rd victim of the Melbourne gangland killings.[6] After an investigation by Operation Purana, Mokbel was charged with Moran's murder.[7]

Mokbel was alleged to have laundered over A$2 million through At the Top of the Town, a high-profile Melbourne CBD brothel which he purchased through a business associate. One of Mokbel's amphetamine producers also ran a brothel in the Melbourne south-eastern suburbs while another Mokbel gang member who trafficked large amounts of drugs for Mokbel also ran a brothel.[8]


Mokbel made every effort to avoid extradition to Australia. He has unsuccessfully made applications in Australia to cancel the Australian extradition attempt.

Lebanese authorities have foreshadowed making their own extradition request to the Greek courts. It is not known how Mokbel could have committed any significant crime that could be tried in or on behalf of Lebanon.

Greek authorities have indicated the serious nature of the charges to be faced in Australia would see extradition to Australia take priority over Greek prosecution of lesser fraud and corruption.

On 18 March 2008, the Supreme Court in Athens granted Australia's request for his extradition. The Greek justice minister's approval was obtained in May 2008.[9]

On 17 May 2008, Mokbel arrived in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, at Tullamarine Airport in a Gulfstream jet along with eight Lebanese men. The cost of the jet drew some criticism, costing the state A$450,000, although the Victorian state intends to regain the costs from Mokbel's criminal earnings.[10]

On 27 February 2012, it was reported Mokbel had suffered a mild heart attack in prison.[11]

On 3 July 2012, Mokbel was sentenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria to 30 years with a minimum term of 22 years.[12]

On 11 February 2019, Mokbel was stabbed in Barwon Prison.[13]

Court cases[edit]

In popular culture[edit]

Mokbel is played by actor Robert Mammone in the Australian drama TV series Underbelly and Fat Tony & Co.. As the title suggests, Mokbel is the main character of the latter series.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ O'Loughlin, Ed (22 April 2006). "Meet the Mokbels at home in Lebanon". Melbourne: The Age. Archived from the original on 6 March 2009. Retrieved 9 July 2008.
  2. ^ Disguised Mokbel grabbed at seaside cafe Archived 27 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine - The Age, 2007-06-06
  3. ^ $1m on crime boss Tony's head Archived 2 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine - Sydney Morning Herald, 2007-04-10
  4. ^ $1m Mokbel reward up for grabs Archived 5 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine - The Age, 2007-06-06
  5. ^ Melbourne’s fatal gang wars came to Perth, court told Archived 14 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine - The West Australian, 2006-09-21
  6. ^ A$150,000 to kill crime boss Archived 5 November 2012 at the Wayback Machine - Sydney Morning Herald, 2006-05-03
  7. ^ Mokbel on Moran murder charge Archived 6 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine - The Australian, 2007-02-28
  8. ^ "Business washed drug cash" by Keith Moor Archived 6 March 2009 at the Wayback Machine Herald Sun 2007-04-30,"The Industrial Vagina Chapter 8: The State as a Pimp, p189" by Sheila Jeffreys"
  9. ^ "Greek court orders Mokbel's extradition - World -". Melbourne. Archived from the original on 21 March 2008.
  10. ^ Richard Kerbaj (19 May 2008). "Tony Mokbel to be billed for return". The Australian.[dead link]
  11. ^ "Mokbel in hospital, may miss court". Big Pond News. 27 February 2012.
  12. ^ "Drug kingpin Mokbel sentenced to 30 years". News Limited. 3 July 2012.
  13. ^ Carey, Melissa Cunningham, Cameron Houston, Simone Fox Koob, Adam (11 February 2019). "'Annoyed' cons may have shivved Mokbel after he bragged about release". The Age. Retrieved 12 February 2019.

External links[edit]