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Woman allegedly drove car in Mejajer crash

Woman allegedly drove car in Mejajer crash


SHE’S the churchgoing mother from a large Tongan-Australian family who police claim drove the vehicle which collided with Salim Mehajer’s allegedly faked car crash.

Malinda Moufferrige, husband Elias and brother-in-law Michael are due to face court in nine days over the alleged conspiracy surrounding the accident on October 16 last year.

The collision between Mr Mehajer’s white Mercedes 4WD and Ms Moufferrige’s black Mitsubishi Outlander has led to the property developer being incarcerated and bail refused.

Charged with perverting the course of justice and conspiracy to cheat and defraud, Mr Mehajer is currently housed in maximum security prison

His slide from penthouse to squalid prison cell has reportedly left him depressed, “lonely” and too “feminine” to cope with jail, lounging half naked amid filthy surroundings.

Fakaha Ki Malinda Moufferrige, 31, along with her husband, 30, and brother-in-law, 28, were charged with conspiring to cheat and defraud and granted bail to appear at Burwood Local Court next week.

But just how did this family-oriented young mother with nine siblings from Campbelltown in southwestern Sydney allegedly become involved in the case?

Ms Moufferrige’s family is a loyal and religious Tongan clan.

When mourning the death of the family matriarch two years ago, she and her many relatives wore matching black hoodies with the deceased’s name and photograph and the words “Rest in God’s love”.

Police facts in the allegedly faked car crash say that Mr Mehajer’s co-accused and co-ordinator of his wedding business, Ahmed Jaghbir, introduced him to Elias and Malinda Moufferrige.

The couple live with their two children in Lidcombe, the suburb in which the accident occurred at the corner of Delhi and Nicholas streets.

A court has heard that nine days before the crash an NRMA insurance policy for $156,780 had been taken out for the white Mercedes on behalf of one of Mr Mehajer’s businesses.

According to allegations in the police facts, minutes before the crash Malinda Moufferrige’s veh­icle was captured on CCTV driving on Dehli St, with her brother-in-law Michael driving 50m behind her.

A passenger in one of the vehicles, Nora-Anne Bush, 30, would also later be charged with conspiring to cheat and defraud.

It is alleged both vehicles pulled over to the side of the road.

The facts alleged that Ms Moufferrige’s vehicle then drove into the Nicholas St ­intersection, slamming into Mr Mehajer’s driver’s side door at around 8.40am.

Michael Moufferrige and Nora-Anne Bush were photographed on the side of the road following the accident.

Hours after the crash a claim on the insurance police for Mr Mehajer’s vehicle was made.

It is alleged that in the days after the crash that Elias and Michael Moufferrige rang Mr Jaghbir claiming they needed to be paid $10,000 for helping arrange the crash.

It is then alleged Mr Jaghbir sent his bank details to Mr Mehajer.

A court heard in January that police were intercepting Mr Jaghbir’s phone in relation to a different matter when they heard him allegedly telling another person that Mr Mehajer had asked him to arrange the crash to “buy” him more time in relation to a court case.

Police intercepted 170 phone calls between Mr Jaghbir, Mr Mehajer and Elias and Michael Moufferrige.

Police allege Mr Mehajer’s sister, Aiisha, lodged the insurance claim with NRMA while her brother was taken from the crash scene to Westmead Hospital.

Police claim Mr Mehajer staged the crash in order to avoid facing court over an alleged assault on a taxi driver.

On the morning of October 16 last year, he was due in the Downing Centre Local Court to face charges over the alleged assault at Star Casino last April.

Mr Mehajer is accused of taking a taxi driver’s​ Eftpos machine and throwing it at his head during an altercation at The Star casino in the early hours of April 2 last year.

He has pleaded not guilty to charges of assault occasioning actual bodily harm, larceny to the value of $2000, destroy or damage property and common assault.

Last week Mr Mehajer was taken from prison to the court for a three-day hearing into the alleged casino assault.

Looking thin and drawn, Salim consulted with his lawyer Brett Galloway who then dramatically withdrew from the case.

Magistrate Valerie Swaine adjourned the casino assault hearing but warned Mr Mehajer to get his act together and organise a new lawyer.

Malinda Moufferrige, Elias Moufferrige, Michael Moufferrige and Nora-Anne Bush are due in Burwood Local Court on February 15.

candace.sutton@news.com.au