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Brawl erupts outside The Albert Palais in Leichhardt over wedding reception guest ‘groping a lot of women’

14 May 2017 7:52 PM
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Brawl erupts outside The Albert Palais in Leichhardt over wedding reception guest ‘groping a lot of women’

A SERIAL groper was believed to be at the centre of the bloody all-in brawl which derailed a Leichhardt wedding reception.

Mathew Carione and Rebecca Becvarovska went “all out” on their wedding day with about 200 people thought to have attended the reception at Leichhardt’s Albert Palais Theatre after they tied the knot in Gladesville on Saturday.

However things soured about 10pm when a fight broke out outside the Catherine St venue with one witness describing blood “splattering” from the frenzied violence.

Mr Carione’s mother Zorica told The Daily Telegraph that it all started because a guest was groping women, including pinching the bottom of the best man’s girlfriend.

“It all stemmed from one guest who we now realise was groping a lot of women, myself included,” she said.

The owner of Albert Palais, Michael Onoufriadis, also said earlier he believed the violence began after a man pinched a woman.

Brad Allsopp, a security guard at the nearby Petersham Inn, said he saw a dozen guys chasing after one man across the road.

“They bashed him out the front of a business, they pretty much started laying into him,” he said.

“I ran across to push them all away and get off him, there were five or six of the guys who had a hold of him; they were punching him and kicking him.”

Mr Allsopp described blood “splattering everywhere” after one man was headbutted straight in the nose.

Police said the 43-year-old was trying to break up the fight and he was treated for a broken nose before being taken to Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.

Mr Allsopp said he was then also punched in the face. “As I was breaking it up, a guy pulled me from the back. I identified myself as security and he punched me in the nose,” he said.

Zorica said that it was a lovely night and the bride and groom didn’t let the violence destroy their evening.

“The married couple had a great time, they didn’t have to see a lot of that stuff (the violence), they have left for their honeymoon,” she said.

However a 26-year-old — who Zorica said was the best man at the wedding — was arrested for allegedly aggressive conduct to police.

He was issued with a criminal infringement notice for offensive language and released pending further inquiries.

Police have not made any other arrests in relation to the fight but will be reviewing CCTV from the venue.

Mr Carione’s cousin said it had been a “beautiful wedding” and the newlyweds had known each other for 15 years. “(The brawl) would have been upsetting to the whole family. The wedding did mean a lot to the whole family … they went all out. They spent a lot of money.”


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