The Sydney lone gunman, Man Haron Monis, was an Iranian refugee with a long crime history before he committed his last act of violence in a Sydney cafe. He was actually on bail when he entered the downtown Sydney premises where his fate, and that of others, became sealed.
50-year-old Monis was born in Iran, and arrived in Australia as a refugee in 1996. A self-proclaimed ‘cleric’, he had been on police files long before the tragic events in Sydney.
He had been sentenced to 300 hours community service for penning highly offensive letters to the families of Australian troops killed on the line of duty in Afghanistan, and was on bail after being convicted of being accessory to murder of his ex-wife, and for dozens of charges of sexual and indecent assault. He also cited black magic, numerology, and meditation, as items in his skill set.
He always maintained that the charges put against him were merely attempts to ‘smear’ him.
Yet, despite the authorities’ awareness of Monis, he was never under surveillance for terrorism, nor was he considered a terrorist threat.
It is not yet known, and it might never be, what triggered his last act of outrageous violence against society. It has emerged that he attempted to have the charges over the letters overturned in the days before the attack.
Still, the man’s real motives might have gone to the grave with him.