A former Rebels bikie president has been found decomposing in the back seat of a $130,000 BMW sports car just 24 hours after his wife reported him missing.
Ricky Ciano, 35, vanished in Sydney on Saturday night only months after surviving an alleged pizza delivery assassination plot for deserting the gang, the Daily Mail reports.
His body was found in a luxury car parked on the side of a road 15 minutes' drive from Oberon, in the Central Tablelands of NSW, at 7.45pm on Tuesday.
Contrary to unconfirmed early reports that Ciano suffered a gunshot wound to the head, police said there were no visible signs of injury on his body, but are treating his death as suspicious.
It's believed he had been left for a couple of days before being found, and homicide detectives are not ruling out the possibility of suicide, The Australian reported.
Ciano left the bikie gang in 2015 after being told he must remove any tattoos linking him to the Rebels, the Daily Telegraph reported.
Shortly after he left the club he survived an attempt to kill him during a fake pizza delivery at his home on the Central Coast.
Ciano leaves four children and an unborn son to his pregnant wife Rachel, who now faces the daunting task of raising a child without his father come July.
On Monday morning, Rachel Ciano changed her Facebook cover photo to an ultrasound of their son, less than two weeks after revealing the gender to her friends.
Responding to gushing congratulatory posts from friends and family, she fondly spoke about clashing on baby names with her now-dead husband.
But just hours later on Monday, the mood changed significantly as she logged in to Ricky Ciano's Facebook account to post a desperate plea for help.
"If anyone has seen or spoken to Ricky in the past two days please contact his family ASAP," she wrote online.
Rachel Ciano said her husband had last been seen in Penrith, western Sydney, on Saturday, where he was supposed to be visiting his daughter.
She had last spoken to him at about 8.20 that night, when he texted her to say there was a blackout and his phone was running low on battery, Fairfax reported.
But any hope of reuniting with her missing husband vanished on Wednesday afternoon when it was confirmed that he had been found dead in a rural town west of Sydney.
Tributes for Ciano flowed on his missing person's page, with friends describing him as a "gentleman" and "champion guy" who would do anything for his kids.
"A cute and mischievous boy who became a man, father, brother and uncle who so loved his family," one woman wrote.
Rachel Ciano remained quiet on social media, breaking her silence only to write "Thank u :( ", in response to three female friends who offered their support and condolences.
"Local detectives, with the assistance of the State Crime Command's homicide squad, are investigating the circumstances surrounding the man's death," NSW police said on Wednesday.
Ricky Ciano left the Sydney chapter of the Rebels bikie gang in 2015 when he moved to the Gold Coast for a "lifestyle change" and after surviving an attempt on his life outside his Central Coast home, according to the Sydney Morning Herald.
Abuzar Sultani, a former Burwood Rebels member, had allegedly been offered $500,000 to kill Ciano in a staged pizza delivery soon after he left the gang.
But when Sultani allegedly appeared at the home, Ciano didn't open the door. Soon after, police stopped a van linked to the alleged plot and found weapons inside.
A statement tendered in court says highway patrol officers allegedly found ballistic vests, ballistic-resistant face masks, two sawn-off shotguns, an automated firearm with a silencer, two revolvers and a balaclava.
Police allege Sultani's DNA was found on a plastic water bottle in the van, which members of Sultani's group allegedly conspired to steal back to reclaim the firearms.
Sultani is in custody charged with conspiracy to murder. Separately, he is also charged over the alleged murder of Pasquale Barbaro alongside other alleged gang members.