Four Kiwi thugs are facing deportation from Australia for the horrific coward punch and brutal bashing of a defenceless young father after a case of mistaken identity.
Melbourne man Kane Dulieu was celebrating his 24th birthday in November of 2016 with a group of mates when they were confronted by the men who wrongly believed they had damaged a car, the Herald Sun reported.
Mr Dulieu was then viciously punched from behind by one of the men, before the rest of the group began violently kicking and punching him while he lay unconscious on the ground.
Footage of the heinous attack that occurred in the early hours of November 18 outside a bar in Melbourne’s CBD shows Mr Dulieu walking along the footpath before a man delivers a brutal and unprovoked coward punch to the young father.
He falls heavily to the ground, before the group of four thugs start punching and kicking his unconscious body.
A friend attempts to run to the aid of the defenceless Mr Dulieu, but he too receives a strike that sends him to the ground.
Mr Dulieu was rushed to Royal Melbourne Hospital with bruising to his brain and a broken jaw and cheekbone.
Friends and family were worried Mr Dulieu, who was placed in a coma after the assault, would not awake or would sustain permanent brain damage as a result.
Miraculously, he emerged from the coma days later in high spirits.
The four men: Maele Maele, 28, his two 20-year-old nephews Apisai and Leti Maele, and friend Andrew Apineru, 26, are facing deportation back to their home nation of New Zealand following their release from jail for their respective and disgusting roles in the attack.
Each pleaded guilty to three counts of intentionally causing injury and one count of recklessly causing injury.
Mr Apineru, who delivered the coward punch to Mr Dulieu, was the victim of a similar attack in Auckland in 2013.
The Melbourne County Court heard he suffered a brain injury as a result, and that played a part in his terrible decision making in attacking the Melbourne father.
He was sentenced to three-and-a-half years behind bars, but will be eligible for parole in two years and three months.
Maele Maele, who has a license to work as a security guard, was jailed for four-and-a-half years for instigating the fight. Judge Mark Dean said he should have known better, but instead ‘inflamed’ the situation.
His two nephews were sentenced to two years and nine months behind bars.
Judge Dean described their attack as ‘savage and cowardly’ and ‘without any justification whatsoever’.
‘The punches and kicks delivered by the accused are of significant intensity,’ he said.
‘Violence of this nature has no place whatsoever in our society.’
Mr Dulieu told the Herald Sun he felt ‘lucky’ to be alive.
‘This could have ended so differently and my son would have had to grow up without a dad,’ he said.
‘That’s what makes me angry.’