Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

{ CABBIE BASHED WITH BOTTLES BY GANG} {Gang of Youths Attack Cab Driver with Bottles}; Victim's Wife Fears He Was Attacked Partly Because of Middle Eastern Appearance

Newspaper article Sunshine Coast Daily (Maroochydore, Australia)

{ CABBIE BASHED WITH BOTTLES BY GANG} {Gang of Youths Attack Cab Driver with Bottles}; Victim's Wife Fears He Was Attacked Partly Because of Middle Eastern Appearance

Article excerpt

Byline: Amy Remeikis amy.remeikis@scnews.com.au

A TAXI driver who was the victim of a random and unprovoked attack in Mooloolaba believes the group of youths who targeted him may have been spurred on by his Middle Eastern appearance.

The Sunshine Coast father of three, who wishes to remain anonymous, took a job with Suncoast Cabs after work in the building industry dried up.

A carpenter and builder by trade, the man and his family moved to Australia for a new life about six months ago.

His wife, a registered nurse, cannot work because she looks after the couple's three young daughters.

THE man took a job as a taxi driver out of "desperation" and had resigned himself to rude questions and remarks about his heritage and religion being part of the job.

But he did not expect to be attacked with glass bottles by four youths in Mooloolaba last week after stopping to see if the young men needed a lift.

The man's wife said her husband was travelling down Venning Street when he saw the group just before 2am on July 2.

He thought they were waving him down and pulled over to see if he could assist them.

However, one of them threw something at the taxi and when the driver stepped out to ask them why, the men emptied out the beer bottles they had been carrying and attacked him.

"He asked, 'what did you hit the taxi with, why did you do that?' and one of them came up and hit him on the side of the face with a bottle, hard enough to break the bones in his face," his wife said.

"He tried to get away but they continued to throw bottles at him. They hit him in the ribs, he has a very swollen knee from when he went down. They broke his glasses, which he needs to drive at night.

"We have to go see a facial surgeon this afternoon, he is going to potentially need surgery for what they did to him," the woman said.

"One whole side of his face is swollen and horrible and apart from that, our children are terrified that he will have to go out and drive again at night. …

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