'Nice arse' call ignites brawl

MELANIE KEMBREY
Last updated 14:23 01/07/2013

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It was the cat call "nice arse" that ignited a brawl during which a man had his fingertip and nail bitten off in Sydney's CBD, a court has heard.

A third man has now been charged over the fight which broke out between a group of six men and a 23-year-old on Elizabeth Street, near Market Street, about 2.45am on Sunday, June 23.

The group was walking behind the 23-year-old and his girlfriend towards Central Station when one of the men yelled out "nice arse", police allege in documents before the court.

The 23-year-old turned around and confronted the men about the comment before he was punched in the rib cage, kicked in the head and left kneeling over a gutter.

Police allege that during a struggle on the ground his middle right finger was bitten "with extreme force" and part of the finger tip and the finger nail was "completely removed".

His girlfriend repeatedly tried to help him by pushing one of the men away and an unknown member of the public stopped their car and also attempted to aid him, the docunments said.

The group of men then left but three of them, including one who had allegedly removed his leather belt and wrapped the strap around his knuckles, turned around and started to walk back in the direction of the injured man, according to the court documents.

Police on patrol in the area saw the injured man in a gutter and intervened and arrested the three men.

Blacktown man Noi Machol, 18, was charged with biting the man's finger tip and nail off and Merrylands man, Subir El Haj, 20, was charged with common assault and affray. They were granted conditional bail.

The third man, Peter Santino, 19, was re-arrested at his Lidcombe home on Friday afternoon and charged with affray and assault occasioning actual bodily harm while in company.

Police allegedly seized a blood stained denim jacket that he was wearing during the fight.

Santino, an apprentice plumber, was also granted conditional bail when he appeared in Parramatta Local Court via video link on Saturday morning. He was instructed not to associate with his two co-accused.

The three men are due to appear in the Downing Centre Local Court later this month.

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- Sydney Morning Herald

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