The Abdallah family, who lost three of their children and a cousin in the Oatlands tragedy three years ago, have filed a civil suit against hitman driver Samuel William Davidson.
The lawsuit, believed to be about Davidson’s insurance policy, seeks compensation for lingering trauma to the family and for children who were injured but survived the catastrophic accident. It will be listed at NSW District Court next week.
The Abdallah children’s parents, Danny and Leila, have publicly forgiven Davidson, announcing this week that they have met with his parents “who are also suffering.”
Antony, 13, Angelina, 12, Sienna, eight, and her niece Veronique Sakr, 11, were walking on a footpath to buy ice cream in Oatlands in western Sydney when they were hit by a car and killed on February 1, 2020.
The Abdallah family before the accident that killed three of their children. The civil suit will be filed in court next week
Samuel Davison is serving a 20-year sentence after driving his car under the influence of drugs and alcohol into a group of seven children, killing four instantly
Davidson was under the influence of drugs, alcohol, driving irregularly and speeding when he fatally struck the four children.
The group mowed down by Davidson also included three other children, all of whom sustained injuries and trauma.
Davidson, then 29, was sentenced in 2021 to 28 years, including 21 years without parole, which was reduced on appeal this year to a maximum of 20 years and a minimum of 15 years.
Danny Abdallah told Daily Mail Australia the court matter was “confidential” and related to ongoing therapy and trauma, but declined to comment further.
Earlier this week, Mr Abdallah announced that the driver who killed his children became a Maronite Catholic in prison due to family forgiveness.
Speaking on a Christian Lives Matter podcast, Mr Abdallah told Stand for Truth broadcaster Charlie Bakhos about the prison transformation that Davidson had undertaken.
Mr Abdallah, whose family are Maronite Catholics themselves, said two people in prison had contacted his spiritual adviser Father Robert-Pio, claiming Davidson wanted to meet him.
“Leila and I are talking to him.” [Fr Robert] a lot,” said Mr. Abdallah.
‘[He] is a good guy and he feeds the homeless… and there was a homeless guy he fed that ended up in jail and said to him, “I’ve got a guy who wants to meet you.”
“There was another guy who called him and said, ‘Look, Father Robert, I have the driver who ran over the Abdullah children that he has in my cell.’
Mr Abdallah added inmates were unaware that Father Robert was his spiritual advisor, whom he relied on after the tragic deaths of his children.
“Of all the priests in Australia, this guy is talking to Father Robert, my spiritual father, yes, and he doesn’t know that,” Mr Abdallah said.
“Well, him [Fr Robert] says: “I know the Abdullah parents, I visit them regularly and when I talk to them, they come to my church.”
‘[Now] He [Davidson] prays the rosary three times a day, goes to mass, studies the bible and wants to become a Maronite Catholic.
Mr Abdallah said he was shocked by Davidson’s change of heart – but said it was because of the forgiveness his family had shown
Mr Abdallah (right) spoke to Christian Lives founder Charlie Bakhos (left) on his Stand for Truth podcast and revealed that Samuel Davison had made a “change of heart”.
Mr Abdallah said he was “shocked” by Davidson’s change of heart and was told it was due to the forgiveness he and his wife Leila had shown.
‘I was shocked. “I honestly didn’t expect Father Robert to visit him and talk to him and make his first confession,” Mr Abdallah said.
“You spoke and he [Davidson] said, “You know, the whole world should have hated me, but thanks to Danny and Leila’s forgiveness, I was able to see life in a different way.”
‘He [Father Robert] he said [Davidson] I kept saying how sorry he was and you know what he did was wrong, but that changed my heart.”
A brave Ms. Abdallah returned to the scene two days after the horrific accident, where she held hands and prayed a rosary with loved ones before forgiving Davidson for his actions.
‘The guy [driver]… Right now I can’t hate him. “I don’t want to see him, but I don’t hate him,” she told reporters.
“I’m thinking in my heart of forgiving him, but I want the court to be fair … I won’t hate him because that’s not who we are.”
The couple later founded the i4give Foundation – to coincide with the anniversary of the crash – to commemorate their lost loved ones and to help others in similar situations.
Abdallah’s children Antony (13), Angelina (12), Sienna (8) and her niece Veronique Sakr (11) died instantly in the accident
Witnesses saw Davison run through a red light at high speed, go counterclockwise around a roundabout, and was driving at a speed limit of 83 mph in a 50 mph zone prior to the accident
The Christ-centered foundation aims to engage communities across Australia in a “collective embrace of the universal good of forgiveness”.
In June 2022, Danny and Leila received two standing ovations at the Vatican after delivering a powerful address on forgiveness.
The West Sydney parents have been invited by the Pope to tell their harrowing story to thousands of parishioners at the 2022 World Meeting of Families in Rome.
Mr Abdallah also told Mr Bakhos that he and his wife spoke to Davison’s parents over breakfast and discussed the incident.
“I was nervous, it was difficult for all of us and for them too, but you know…we learned from this that there are no winners in this tragedy,” Mr Abdallah said.
“Samuel Davidson has a grieving mother going through her pain. We wanted to understand and show them that we are in pain and they apologized for their son’s actions.
“I know they lost their daughter to cancer and years later they lost their son, now in prison and they have nobody.”
“They know what we’re going through and they acknowledge that, and we have also acknowledged their grief and pain.”
Although Ms Abdallah, 37, has lost three children, when asked how many children she has, she always replies with seven – “three in heaven and four here”.
Danny and Leila Abdallah forgive Davison and are launching the i4give Day and Foundation — to coincide with the anniversary of the crash — to remember their lost loved ones and to help others in similar situations.