Disgraced Sydney businessman Salim Mehajer is seeking legal access to a mobile phone because "his safety is paramount" and prison officers had intelligence there was a $250,000 bounty on his head, his lawyer says.
The 32-year-old former Auburn deputy mayor applied for a number of bail variations in Parramatta District Court on Wednesday.
This included access to one phone, the ability to live at home without his mother and a lift on his prohibition from social media - particularly Instagram.
Mehajer's solicitor, Zali Burrows, said "one of the most concerning things" justifying the phone use was a previous break-and-enter at his Lidcombe home and a news report that Silverwater corrections officers "had intelligence there was a $250,000 bounty - that was a hit - on him".
She tendered a June 2018 article published by the Daily Mail and told Judge James Bennett the bounty was not something the "journalists ... would just make up".
Mehajer's younger sister, Mariam "Mary" Mehajer, provided an affidavit indicating the family communicate with each other through social media.
Under questioning on Wednesday, she said contacting her brother via a landline phone or email would be inadequate.
"I do believe that communication should be instant and it should always be available," Ms Mehajer told the court.
Mehajer - who still considers himself a property developer - was released from Cooma Correctional Centre on Tuesday morning after serving 11 months behind bars for electoral fraud.
Ms Burrows said Mehajer also wanted his bail varied so he could leave the state as he has fresh legal proceedings in Cooma, a NSW town south of the ACT.
The trip is "roughly" seven hours by road, the lawyer said.
But Judge Bennett suggested there was no more than a 10-minute difference in driving through or around the ACT from Sydney to get to Cooma.
He asked Ms Burrows to present him with a Google Map of the two journeys when Mehajer's bail variation review resumes on Tuesday.
NSW Police on Friday charged Mehajer with fraud offences, alleging he nominated another person as the driver of his vehicles which had received infringement notices in 2012 and 2013.
He is facing four counts of making a false declaration and four counts of "dealing in identification information" and is due to front Cooma Local Court in July.
Mehajer is additionally fighting allegations he staged a 2017 crash in which his Mercedes AMG collided with another vehicle just before he was meant to appear in court over a taxi driver assault.
A Nine spokeswoman on Tuesday said they have been in talks with Mehajer over the past year "to tell his story" on their 60 Minutes program.
Outside court on Wednesday, Mehajer asked reporters to "please" leave him alone.
Australian Associated Press