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Perth man in jail over ‘cabbie bashing’

Published: (Updated: ) in Australian News by .

Tore Gerard Vincenzo Bembasciuto, 23, is behind bars in a Balinese prison after allegedly punching a taxi driver and snatching his phone in an altercation in Kuta.

A young Perth man arrested in Bali for the alleged assault of a taxi driver attempted to hide in a convenience store's third-floor storage room but was later found by police.

As revealed by 9News, Tore Gerard Vincenzo Bempasciuto was taken into custody in the early hours of yesterday morning, accused of punching Saiful Nurokhim to the ground because he looked like someone he thought stole his mobile phone.

Police say the 23-year-old was angry when he approached the driver around 4am (local time) at a taxi rank, outside Kuta nightclub 'Lxxy', and snatched his Samsung mobile phone.

Mr Nurokhim, 43, allegedly chased Bempasciuto who then punched him to the ground, before the Perth man's female friend also threw punches while the driver remained on the footpath.

The police report, obtained by 9News, said the Perth mechanical fitter "slammed the victim's cellphone to pieces" then punched a local man who tried to intervene.

It said the accused slipped on wet concrete while running away before he and his friend attempted to hide in the upstairs storage room of an Indomaret store, but were soon detained by police.

Bempasciuto allegedly told officers his mobile phone went missing while he was partying at 'Bounty' nightclub and he thought Mr Nurokhim looked like someone who'd been following him.

The taxi driver was left with a bloodied nose, bleeding inside his mouth and pain at the back of his head from hitting the ground.

Bempasciuto's friend hasn't been arrested but police say they've seized security footage of the alleged attack and interviewed witnesses.

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He's being held at Kuta police station and is facing up to two years and eight months in a Bali jail unless he compensates his alleged victim which could pave the way for dodging a court case.

Source: 9News

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