John ‘BIG Kash’ Lavulo (pictured) escaped a shooting on July 8, with a fellow rapper since charged with intent to murder over the attack
A Sydney rapper has revealed his feud with a fellow rapper charged with his attempted murder was about music and began on Instagram.
John ‘Big Kash’ Lavulo was shot in the arm as he drove his Mercedes Benz sedan out of his apartment block at Warwick Farm, in Sydney’s west, on August 8.
The prominent rapper was shot multiple times and says his girlfriend – who was in the front passenger’s seat – could have been killed if not for his forearm getting in the way of a bullet.
Police last week arrested fellow rapper Thomas ‘Masi Rooc’ Vandermade, 29, after a month long manhunt.
He was charged with shooting with intent to murder, discharge firearm with intent to cause grievous bodily harm and not disclosing the identity of a driver or passenger.
Lavulo, 33, told Daily Mail Australia he had never actually met Vandermade despite police saying the pair had been ‘taunting’ each other on social media ‘for some time’.
Police last week arrested fellow rapper Thomas ‘Masi Rooc’ Vandermade (pictured), 29, and he was charged with intent to murder over the shooting
The prominent rapper was shot multiple times and says his girlfriend Amelia (right) – who was sitting next to him – could have been killed if not for his forearm getting in the way of a bullet
‘I don’t really know him at all, he knew my brother – that’s how I first heard of him,’ he said.
‘This beef was not gang related. He was glorifying jail to kids in his songs and I didn’t like it so I started trolling him on Instagram.’
NSW Police Detective Superintendent Robert Critchlow said the investigation was an ‘interesting’ one because of the social media feuding.
He said as part of the case against Vandermade, police would rely on evidence that indicated the shooting was a ‘targeted’ attempt at an assassination.
‘The investigations into this case have been interesting because it shows us the motives really sit around rap groups and those that see themselves as rappers,’ Det Supt Critchlow said.
‘There’s been some public taunting which has been going on for some time utilising social media and other outlets and its resulted, we will allege, in this shooting.
‘It is really unacceptable that people can’t sort their differences out without using firearms.
‘What we will allege is that this is an attempt at an assassination. It wasn’t just a drive-by shooting. There was a clear attempt to kill this person.’
Lavulo was shot in both the shoulder and forearm.
He says if his forearm had not have still been on the wheel, the bullet could have hit his girlfriend Amelia in the head as she ducked down in the seat next to him.
Despite the alleged best efforts of the shooters to block him in, Lavulo managed to escape in his car and drive himself to a nearby hospital.
He has undergone multiple surgeries since that attack and was at one point told by doctors his arm may be amputated, but is now well on his way back to 100 per cent.
Amelia however remains spooked from the shooting, with the couple keeping a low profile.
‘We’re just slowly readjusting, she is still a bit jumpy,’ Lavulo said.
‘She has just been laying low, only going out to shop or whatever, but she should not have been brought into it.’
The ex-bikie turned rapper, ‘BIG Kash’ was shot multiple times as he sat in his white Mercedes outside his apartment block at Warwick Farm, in Sydney’s west. His girlfriend was in the passenger’s seat and narrowly escaped injury
In the aftermath of Vendermade’s arrest at his Blacktown apartment block last week, Lavulo was accused of dobbing him in to police.
He launched a scathing attack on people who claimed as much on social media and is adamant it is not in his nature to be a ‘rat’.
When asked how he reacted to those claims, Lavulo said: ‘I burned’.
‘It goes against who I am. The truth will come out when the brief of evidence ends up in court, that will show I didn’t speak to police.’
There has been speculation online that Vendermade’s latest song, released under his moniker Masi Rooc, made reference to the shooting.
‘When the call goes out for the war just know that I always follow through,’ he sings.
A few lines later the lyrics say ‘talk s**t get sent’ and are followed by him mimicking a gun sound.
The shooting has helped boost Big Kash’s brand and social media following, with the rapper saying he had received an influx of support in the weeks since being shot.
Lavulo somehow managed to escape the attacker as he fired shots into his car and drove to a nearby hospital, pulling up on the footpath outside (pictured)
NSW Police rushed to the Warwick Farm scene and then on to Liverpool Hospital where they assessed the bloodstained white Mercedes being driven by the rapper
He later shared a photo on Instagram of him in bed at Liverpool Hospital where he underwent surgery for a gunshot wound to his arm.
‘I’ve been getting love from all over the world, I’ve had a lot more people get into my music and so its put me in a good position,’ he said.
‘They (the attacker) have helped me out.’
BIG Kash and his girlfriend had spent the night at dinner with criminal turned rapper Caleb ‘Hoodrich Hefner’ Valeri and embattled former prison officer Melissa Goodwin.
Afterwards they returned home to pick up some alcohol, before leaving to see more friends.
It was as they left the unit complex that the attack happened.
Officers arrived at the scene on Lachlan Street before moving to Liverpool Hospital, where BIG Kash’s bloodstained white Mercedes was parked on a footpath outside.
In the hours after his narrow escape the rapper shared a photo of himself in hospital on Instagram to let his 38,000 followers know he was doing okay.
BIG Kash and his girlfriend had spent the night at dinner with criminal turned rapper Caleb ‘Hoodrich Hefner’ Valeri (left) and embattled former prison officer Melissa Goodwin (right)
Like BIG Kash, Valeri is a former bikie turned rapper (left). He filmed some of the footage used in his rap videos while in prison (right)
Laying on a bed cabled to a machine, he can be seen smiling for the camera as his blood soaked hand makes a rude gesture in front of his eyes.
Lavulo made a splash in the rap scene under his moniker BIG Kash and the notorious mixtape ‘K.O.A’ (Kash On Delivery), released in 2016.
He says his move into music came after becoming disillusioned with the bikie game.
‘I got to a certain point where I felt I was throwing my life away,’ Lavulo said.
‘An old Hells Angels mate of mine Tyrone Slemnik was gunned down and you look at things different.
‘When lives are getting lost, it’s a different story to what it’s made out to be.’