Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Bashed broadcaster Michael Laws has laid the blame for his assault in a Wanganui bar on the local Hells Angels gang

Bashed broadcaster Michael Laws has laid the blame for his assault in a Wanganui bar on the local Hells Angels gang - which he says is "petty, pathetic and cowardly".

Mr Laws suffered a black eye and lost several porcelain dental veneers when he was hit at Caroline's Celtic bar at about 11.30pm on Friday.

Police are investigating and told the Herald they had not identified the man responsible for the assault.

A spokeswoman said the assault was not serious, but police were trying to find CCTV images from the area to help identify the culprit.

But Mr Laws, who alerted media to the assault through an emailed statement on Sunday afternoon, shared his own theory on Radio Live yesterday.

He told listeners witnesses had told him they were "95 per cent certain" the man who hit himwas a Hells Angel gang member or associate.

"That would figure. Hells Angels are not the soundest people in the world, to be perfectly honest with you, and they are cowardly.

"The Hells Angels, they'll do their little bit for intimidation.

"It's always petty, it's always pathetic, it's always cowardly and it's always done never to your face. And they always run away."

Mr Laws told the Herald after the show that witnesses had come forward with the information about the attacker and he would pass it on to police.

"One has identified an alleged gang associate, connected with Hells Angels. I am not able to confirm that information but would not be surprised.

"A Hells Angel member has also boasted publicly of a rock being thrown through my children's bedroom window earlier, and there have been other intimidatory incidents including an earlier incident in 2005 when I was out walking with my two youngest kids and two patched gang members rode at me and shouted obscenities."

On air Mr Laws said because of his part in the success of anti-gang legislation in Wanganui, he had been targeted by local gangs - but it was usually a verbal attack or rude gesture.

"Gangs are cowards. That's why people join gangs. They're losers in life and they join a gang."

Mr Laws said the assault was unacceptable and every New Zealander should be able to go about their business "without fear of assault or affray".

He was at the bar with "an attractive young blonde", and was walking over to check out the band that was playing when he was "blindsided" by a man in a hoodie.

"It's the shock of being hit that always gets you."

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