true crime

Meshilin Maroggi was the 'brains behind' one of Australia's biggest criminal families.

Meshilin Marrogi was a shrewd businesswoman. Far shrewder than anyone realised.

She'd spent years launching a series of businesses in her hometown of Melbourne, establishing a name for herself as an entrepreneurial force.

Then, in the prime of her life, just 30 years old, Meshilin was struck down by COVID-19. The year was 2021 – the peak of the pandemic – and the virus ultimately claimed her life, devastating her family and friends. 

Just three years later, Meshilin's grave was set upon by what police described as 'vandals'. But the grave wasn't just desecrated. The attackers broke into a mausoleum at her resting place, the Preston General Cemetery, smashing, dragging the young woman's coffin some distance and smashing it open.

The question following the attack was: why? Why would anyone want to break into the coffin of Meshilin Marrogi?

Now police feel they have the answers.

Watch: Meshilin Marrogi's grave smashed three years after her death. Post continues below.

Video via 7News.

Who is Meshilin Marrogi?

Meshilin's family moved to Australia from Iraq in 1996, the year the United States commenced its Desert Strike. The Marrogis – including Meshilin's brothers Jesse and George – fled the war-torn country, settling in Melbourne.


It's what transpired over the next two decades that would set the Marrogis apart from the average Aussie family. While Meshilin seemingly focused her attention on developing businesses, her brother George's life spiralled into a one of serious crime. Armed Robbery. Manslaughter. Murder.

In fact, George Marrogi would go on to become one of Australia's most feared underworld killers, and the head of what became known as the Notorious Crime Family (NCF) empire.

This week though, a new report has alleged that Meshilin wasn't just related to the crime family, but an intrinsic part of it too. The Age's report looks inside the billion-dollar drug empire, saying that Meshilin was "the brains behind the operation".

The reporters said it was Meshilin who had the "blueprint" of the business in her mind, the one who best understood the NCF's portolio and dealings.

"[Meshilin] had it running extremely well. She had it running as a business even though it was illicit money, an illicit business driven by drugs," said Victoria Police Senior Sergeant Nathan Toey. 

"Even though it was at George's drive and behest, she was the brains behind it all."

Meshilin was allegedly "a wizard at washing dirty money clean", involved in money laundering, and  schemes such as trading in paintings, digital artwork and diamonds. 

George Marrogi and Meshilin Marrogi. Image: Instagram.


Who opened Meshilin's coffin – and why?

As reported by The Age, two men broke into the Preston General Cemetery crypt and memorial and attempted to steal Meshilin's body. 

However, due to a broken lift, the casket was dragged some distance and smashed open. A $100,000 ring is believed to have been stolen from the body.

While former homicide detective Charlie Bezzina told Channel 7 News there was an unwritten code among crime gangs that you "don't go after families – alive and dead", Assoc Prof Kennedy says the underworld rarely follows the rules.

Describing the attack as a "very low act," Detective Bezzina expressed concern about the possibility of further retaliation from the Marrogis. 

At the time of the offense, Assoc Prof Kenndy said the attack on Meshilin's grave was unlikely to be an act of gangland war, and more likely to be the work of unrelated Australian criminals.

"The reason could be as simple as the funeral director told someone the body had a lot of expensive jewellery still on it. Someone like [convicted murderer and drug trafficker] Carl Williams when he was alive.

"It could be in retaliation for an earlier betrayal or attempt or someone's life. It could be over a dispute from prison. [But] if I were to hazard a guess, I would be looking into who knew there was expensive jewellery on the body. 

"It seems a very unusual revenge attack and believe it or not, even the hardest of criminals in my experience would disapprove of this behaviour."

However, according to recent findings reported by The Age, a long-time gangland rival by the name of Kazem "Kaz" Hamad, 39, is now the prime suspect of the orchestration and attempted theft of the body, with plans to mutilate Meshilin's corpse as a "f**k you" to the Marrogi family.

"He is, we believe, leading a significant criminal enterprise, which is impacting not just Victoria but other states," said Detective Inspector Graham Banks of Victoria Police's Lunar taskforce at a press conference about the attempted body theft.

"I'm concerned about the recklessness of this group in particular. It's a thing that's emerging across Australia where we have high-level organised criminals living overseas, directing harm into the community. Reckless abandon is how they go about it because they're often in countries with extradition," Banks said. 

"He is directing, we would say, the majority of the crime that's been the subject of why this taskforce has been stood up. He's directing it from the top of the pyramid."

Police are now investigating whether the attack on Meshilin's grave was a gangland message to her brother, who's currently serving a 32-year sentence for the 2016 murder of drug dealer Kadir Ors. 

Ors was peppered with bullets during the shocking broad daylight murder. At the time of George's sentencing, Justice Paul Coghlan described the execution-style killing as "one of the most blatant examples of murder I have ever seen".

Meshilin's death was said to have had a huge impact on her brother, who was imprisoned at the time, and therefore unable to attend her funeral.

Last year, George was charged with directing a drug syndicate from inside jail.

This article was originally published on September 18, and has since been updated with new information.

Feature Image: Daily Mail/Instagram.