A boxing tournament in Melbourne attended by key underworld figures including Mick Gatto has ended with one man dead and two injured, and two gunmen on the loose.
Victoria police Homicide Squad Detective Sergeant Sol Solomon said the shooting outside the Melbourne Pavilion in Kensington on Friday night at 10pm occurred during the event amid a “packed to capacity” crowd.
As the shooting spree unfolded, with one of those injured shot in the foyer, chaos ensued as patrons scrambled to get away from the fight.
The event was a seven-bout card, headlined by Melbourne boxer Kane Watts fighting Tasmanian Jayden “the plugger” Joseph for the WBA Oceania Cruiserweight title.
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Detective Sergeant Solomon confirmed a number of shots were fired during the event and several cars were also sprayed with bullets, and that the victims were “known to police”.
He added the three dead and injured were not related to each other.
“One was killed at the scene out the front of the club and two other men were shot, one was shot inside the foyer of the club and there was a third victim who also received a gunshot wound.
“I have no information as to the motive of the shooting or whether it was gang-related or otherwise,” he told reporters on Saturday.
“(It’s an) extremely disturbing incident to take place at a well organised, well managed boxing event, a regular event at this venue,” he said.
The gunmen fled the scene on foot. The two surviving victims are currently in hospital – one of them fighting for his life.
He said the incident was captured on CCTV.
“We have not identified those responsible for the shooting, or the motive. However the information we have gleaned so far have us confident this was a targeted attack with no further risk to the public,” he said.
The Age has reported the match was attended by high-profile underworld figures Mick Gatto and Toby Mitchell and members of the Haddara family.
Mr Gatto briefly attended the scene on Saturday morning before driving away in a Mini Cooper with associates.
Police have cordoned off the area on Stubbs Street, which is a semi-industrial area.
A witness, who declined to be named, told AAP he heard the shots but didn’t see the fatal shooting.