News24

Tomic: Cops targeting my car

2011-12-14 10:31

Sydney - Teenage Australian tennis star Bernard Tomic on Wednesday said he was being targeted by a police officer who he said had repeatedly pulled over his distinctive orange sports car.

The 19-year-old, ranked 42 in the world, has been granted a special exemption from his provisional licence to drive his high-octane A$150 000 BMW M3 to and from tennis training.

But the teenager, who this year became the youngest man to reach the Wimbledon quarter-finals since Boris Becker in 1986, said he was pulled over by a policeman in the state of Queensland on Sunday night for allegedly "hooning".

Hooning is an Australian term that covers driving recklessly and street racing.

"The car's very loud but I don't know what he defines as hooning," Tomic told the Courier Mail newspaper.

"I didn't speed, I didn't do any of that stuff."

Tomic said he felt the officer had taken a personal dislike to him and was "always on my tail", insisting he had done nothing wrong and was simply going "about my business as a tennis player".

"He's pulled me over a few times but now it's starting to get a little bit more aggressive," he said.

"I've got training, gym, massages and meetings I have to go to... my days are very busy getting ready for the summer," he said.

"I don't know what it is - jealousy or whatever - but this policeman seems to have it in for me. If I did the wrong thing, he would charge me, but he hasn't."

Police declined to comment on why Tomic had been given the exemption but said celebrities were not afforded special treatment and the officer involved had been cleared of any wrongdoing.

"The issues... have been overviewed by a senior officer and no evidence of any breach of discipline or misconduct has been identified," a police spokesperson said.

AFP