Less than three years after Salim Mehajer made headlines with his lavish wedding, the controversial Sydney businessman is behind bars and bankrupt.
His dream of becoming prime minister is well and truly shattered, as he continues to fight legal battles including electoral fraud claims and charges he breached an AVO taken out by his former wife.
The former Auburn deputy mayor was declared bankrupt by Federal Court Circuit judge Justin Smith on Tuesday.
He rejected his lawyer’s argument that the bankruptcy notice was invalid.
The petitioning creditor for the bankruptcy order was the liquidator of Mehajer’s own company, SM Project Developments, over a debt of about $200,000.
The application was supported by other creditors including the Australian Taxation Office and Prime Marble & Granite Pty Ltd.
The company was not paid for elaborate stonework carried out at Mehajer’s Sydney residence, previously described as a “marble palace” by Judge Judith Gibson.
Last October, the District Court judge ordered him to pay the company their bill and interest amounting to $668,276, as well as legal costs estimated at $350,000.
The 31-year-old property developer was not in court on Tuesday, having been refused bail three times over claims he staged a car crash and defrauded an insurance company.
His estate will now be managed by a bankruptcy trustee, a possibility Mehajer had described as a “catastrophe” during his latest bail application in March.
He considered a bankruptcy notice as “second from death” and “I’m the only person who can address it”.
“Now it’s on a very thin edge,” he told the magistrate.
The car crash case was having an “immense impact … on my lifestyle”, by which he meant his family life and business dealings, and had led to the “collapse” of everything he had built over the past 31 years.
Mehajer first captured the public’s attention in 2015 when his wedding shut down streets in Sydney’s west.
He hired four helicopters that landed in a local park, while his fiancee Aysha travelled with a $50 million motorcade of 45 motorbikes and 35 luxury cars.
In a later television interview, he stood at a lectern and said he would like to be prime minister.
“I’d like to make my way up to the very top spot,” he said.
“That would (be) my dream come true.”
Since then, he has been put on a good behaviour bond for assaulting a taxi driver outside The Star casino but was given no penalty for assaulting a Channel 7 journalist after his arrest.