Wallaby great arrested in Japan

2018-01-17 10:20
George Smith (Getty Images)

Tokyo - Legendary Wallaby George Smith has been arrested in Tokyo, police said on Wednesday, after he allegedly refused to pay his taxi fare and then assaulted the driver.

The 37-year-old flank is suspected of running away from a taxi without paying roughly 10 000 yen ($90) for the fare near his home in the small hours of December 31, according to Tokyo Metropolitan Police.

The driver chased Smith, who then allegedly punched the driver in his face, causing "injuries that require two weeks to fully heal," police spokesman Naoto Wakabayashi told AFP.

Smith, who is now playing for Japan's Suntory Sungoliath team, was drunk at the time and was arrested on the spot by a police officer, the spokesperson said.

He denies the allegations, but is still in police custody, Wakabayashi said.

Smith, who won 111 caps, is seen as a Wallaby great and twice won the prestigious John Eales Medal for best Australian rugby player.

Beverage giant Suntory, which runs the team, apologised over the incident in a brief statement.

"We sincerely apologise to the victim and other parties concerned. We are also sorry for causing concern and trouble to many people in the public," Suntory said.

Suntory officials said they were not aware of further details about the case.

Read more on:    george smith  |  rugby

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy

Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


The 2017/18 Absa Premiership season is under way. Can Bidvest Wits defend their title? Will Soweto giants Kaizer Chiefs or Orlando Pirates emerge victorious? Or will the bookies' favourites, Mamelodi Sundowns, taste success for a record eighth time? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Who will finish top of the SA Conference in this year's Super Rugby tournament?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.