Smiling Mokbel jailed over ongoing silence in murder investigation
The nephew of drug lord Tony Mokbel has been jailed for 14 days after refusing to answer questions in court - but his lawyer has immediately lodged an appeal.
Anthony Mokbel smiled as Magistrate Kieran Gilligan told him a fine was not sufficient deterrence for what he deemed a serious example of contempt of court.
"A charge of contempt is something that obstructs or interferes with the administration of justice," Mr Gilligan said.
"You have pleaded guilty but I don't give it much weight.
"This matter involves a murder investigation. You are not a suspect.
"It may well be that he has further evidence that the investigators don't know.
"We don't know as he's refused to answer questions about it.
"In my view your contempt was intentional. In my view a fine is not sufficient."
Mr Gilligan charged Mokbel with contempt earlier this month after he refused to answer questions when hauled before Melbourne Magistrates Court for compulsory examinations about the March 1 shootings last year at a Kensington boxing match.
Abdullah El Nasher, his older brother Ali, Mikhael Myko and Osamma Allouche, all aged in their 20s, are accused of opening fire and killing Craigieburn father Ben Togiai, 30, and wounding two other men.
Police say Mokbel was seen on CCTV at the boxing match with the accused men and that he could hold information key to the case.
But when he entered the witness box at the February 5 examinations, he was only prepared to take the oath, and sat in silence when the prosecutor put questions to him.
Ms Ristivojevic submitted today that Mokbel had not even conceded he was at the Melbourne Pavillon boxing event.
She had pushed for a fine over jail, submitting Mokbel was a youthful offender who had pleaded guilty at the earliest stage.
She said it was not like the police had hit a "stalemate" in the case because Mokbel did not give a statement, saying they clearly had sufficient evidence to charge four men.
After being lead away by custody officers into the court cells, Ms Ristivojevic said she would lodge an appeal immediately.
She is expected to return before Mr Gilligan later today to argue Mokbel be released on bail pending the appeal.