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“For those that don’t know of him, Eli was a writer, MC and DJ in the Sydney scene but most importantly he was a straight-up good bloke who will be terribly missed,” said one friend, MrIzz, in an online posting to the hip hop magazine Stealth

Another Sydney-based hip hop artist, Scott Burns, wrote: “Eli had a heart of gold, a great supporter and artist within the local hip hop movement. This is tragic, still speechless. Rest in peace mate.”

“Eli was a champion,” wrote Swarmy, while another poster, Rival, described Mr Westlake as “one of the nicest guys you could hope to meet, a true supporter of the scene”.

“He had music in his blood and [I] was looking forward to hearing what he produced,” another bereaved friend, Magic D, wrote on the Stealth forum yesterday.

Another poster, Sarmone, said: “As much as I know you’re probably in a better place mate, I’m selfish and wish you were still here.”