Alleged Sydney gangland figure Amar Kettule was shot dead while sitting in a car next to his girlfriend in the early hours of Sunday morning, six years after his brother was slain in eerily similar circumstances.
The 34-year-old was set upon in William Street, Fairfield, about 2.40am before he was shot multiple times in what police said was a targeted attack, potentially at the hand of his rivals.
Kettule was born in Iraq in 1986 before migrating to New Zealand with his family when he was eight. He moved to Sydney as a teenager.
It is believed Kettule was a senior member of the True Kings, a street gang that is the sworn enemy of the DLASTHR gang.
A violent turf war, often regarding drug supply, between the groups escalated in 2016 and resulted in bloody methods of intimidation such as drive-by shootings and fire bombings in Sydney's southwest.
One member of the True Kings was driving with another man in March 2016 when shots were fired at them, allegedly from a vehicle carrying DLASTHR, also known as "The Last Hour", gang members.
The True Kings' car crashed before the alleged rival gang members caught up with them, and one allegedly pointed a gun at a man in the car – though it didn't fire.
Both groups are believed to be branches of the Assyrian Kings, the gang responsible for the murder of 25-year-old policeman David Carty.
In 2012, DLASTHR members split from the gang to form their own group, the True Kings.
One of DLASTHR's founding members, Raphael Joesph, has been missing, presumed murdered, since 2014.
Much of this violence plays out in the Fairfield area, with group members – often from extended families with Assyrian backgrounds – residing in the areas.
Gangs expert Dr Michael Kennedy believes the violence, particularly the attack on Kettule, could be the result of a "d**k measuring competition".
"(Amar) could have overstepped the mark in terms of his status, or offended someone from another family," the Western Sydney University lecturer told NCA NewsWire.
"People will kill him for a whole range of standard reasons … you know, he's bad for business or is dabbling in an area where he shouldn't or simply that he won't negotiate.
"Maybe it's a retaliation or a revenge thing. Maybe he was involved in another shooting."
Another expert, Dr Terry Goldsworthy, a professor in criminology at Bond University, said organised crime gangs used violence as "a way to send messages out".
"Murders are usually a means to an end, it's the same tools used throughout the world by organised crime groups. They use violence to establish their dominance in criminal or geographical markets," he told NCA NewsWire.
"It's hard for law enforcement to get information or intelligence on the gangs. Blood is thicker than water."
Acting Fairfield commander Detective Superintendent Glen Fitzgerald said on Sunday the motive behind Kettule's death was still unknown, but detectives were looking into whether a rival group was behind the attack.
Officers now fear the group might be out to seek revenge.
"It's part of the investigation (the feud) and a line of inquiry but the cause and motive is very unknown, it's still very early in the investigation,'' Superintendent Fitzgerald said.
"We will have a number of police out on the highway doing whatever we can to eliminate any chances of any type of action happening.
"But until we know the cause of this, it's difficult to say what will happen."
Kettule's younger brother Dyllan was just 19 when he was shot and killed in 2014 while he sat with his girlfriend outside her home in Canley Vale just before 3am on a Sunday.
Both were alleged to have had links to bikie gangs, while Amar was a senior member of the True Kings, which Dr Kennedy argued was more of an extended family rather than a sophisticated criminal syndicate.
Dr Kennedy, who worked as a detective in the force for more than two decades, said the fallout from Amar's death could result in more bloody scenes as other members look to make their status known.
"It's a d**k measuring competition," he said.
"Mine's bigger than yours. I'm in charge. My dad's in charge. There's a whole range of that sabre-rattling stuff that goes on."
Amar is survived by his brother Feras, and police have said his family are helping with the investigation.
People, believed to be members of Amar's family, arrived on the scene after the shooting, with one woman pictured being consoled by police as a black vehicle was stationed nearby, riddled with bullet holes.
Officers were out doorknocking and making efforts to obtain CCTV footage from nearby shops and homes on Sunday.
Tributes have been posted on Facebook for Amar, with one person saying: "Fly high Amar, you are now with your brother watching over your loved ones who are broken into a million pieces."
Another said: "The whole nation is going to be mourning and is in loss. The only thing making me feel a little bit better is sitting here and dedicating these posts to you, yet they will never bring you back."
Sections of William and Harris streets in Sydney were closed and people urged to avoid the area.