Jacob Elliott’s lawyer said he was young and desperate to impress his father when he followed Maghnie’s instructions to exact revenge on the Prahran nightclub by firing four shots from a car on April 14, 2019.
Two people died and three were injured in the shooting, which occurred at 3am outside the club.
Elliott, then aged 18, and the car’s driver, Allan Fares, were found guilty of murder and attempted murder by a Supreme Court jury in April this year.
They drove to the club in a stolen Porsche after Elliott’s younger half-brother Ali Maghnie was ejected for poor behaviour, speaking to his father and then to Elliott after the incident.
Elliott and Fares faced the second day of a pre-sentence hearing on Thursday, along with Moussa Hamka who was found guilty of assisting.
“It’s more likely than not that it was Nabil Maghnie who designed the retributive attack,” Elliott’s barrister Julie Condon QC told the Supreme Court.
“You’ve got a career criminal who has a son who’s been on the margins… he’s got a desperate need for acceptance, he’s got a misguided sense of loyalty to Mr Maghnie.
“You cannot remove or exclude or divorce the role of Nabil Maghnie being front and center in the circumstances under which this event came about.”
Condon said the jury verdict did not resolve whether Elliott was instructed by his father or if Maghnie was “the ultimate architect” of the shooting, as she said he was “the type of person” who may order such an attack.
While there was no direct evidence of communication between Elliott and his father in the hours before the shooting, she said Maghnie communicated with Elliott using an encrypted phone.
She argued Elliott served a mitigated prison sentence due to his father’s likely involvement in planning the attack.
Nabil Maghnie died in January 2020 after he was shot dead in a car park in Melbourne’s north.
Elliott did not meet his father’s side of the family until he was 10, after being raised by his single mother.
He moved in with his father at age 15 and quickly became immersed into a fast-paced lifestyle of money, cars and expensive clothing, his maternal aunt Kerri Jergens told the court.
“I feel truthfully he kind of took on his father’s person,” she said.
“He kind of turned more to wanting to be so accepted by them, the Maghnies.”
His paternal aunt Fay Maghnie said Elliott had come from a family of mostly female relatives and her brother may have come across as intimidating.
She said one time Maghnie hit Elliott and they didn’t speak for a year.
“You put a 15-year-old boy with a man that has a lot of power, that has a lot of authority, that has a lot of respect, and Jacob didn’t know how to deal with it,” she said .
The hearing continues before Justice Andrew Tinney.