Salim breaks down over voter fraud
SALIM Mehajer has told a court he "didn't mean to rig" a local council election as he faces a Sydney magistrate for sentencing over electoral fraud.
Mr Mehajer this morning took to the stand before sentencing where he extended an apology for "his actions [and] behaviour" to his family, community and "law enforcement".
"I'm very upset," Mehajer told the court.
"I want to give out a heartfelt apology … firstly my family, the community, any law enforcements," he said.
"I just wanted to serve the community."
Mr Mehajer faces sentencing over voter fraud at an Auburn Council election.
The court heard Mr Mehajer was recently diagnosed as having bipolar. Mr Mehajer said he "accepted" the diagnosis.
"I suffered significant depression [when in custody] and [thought] 'maybe I do need help'," he said.
"[It affects] the decisions I make … I'm my own worst enemy," he said through tears.
"I may appear to be a hard shell but inside I'm hurt.
"I dragged my sister in it … and that's the main thing … she's my family."
Mr Mehajer said he didn't think he was doing anything wrong at the time. He told the court he was studying law and hoped to continue studies later this year.
He had previously denied all charges against him but today told the court he was "happy to accept" his role in fraudulent activities.
"My aim was to be a part of a group of friends and stand out a bit," he said.
"I didn't get any benefit from council … not even paper … I didn't claim it."
When asked about "fiddling with the electoral process" by the prosecutor, Mr Mehajer said: "It was a failure...it was a big boy's game...it wasn't for children. We didn't belong there".
Mr Mehajer shot to prominence in August 2015 when his opulent wedding, which included a jet flyover, four helicopters and $50 million worth of supercars, involved an unauthorised road closure and drew national media attention. That relationship has since dissolved.
"The wedding was the first time ...in 2015...[my sisters thought] 'OK he has serious issues'," Mr Mehajer this morning told the court.
He is facing up to 10 years jail. The sentencing hearing continues.