Blues wing George Moala has been found guilty of assault with intent to injure, but has been remanded on bail.
Moala and his brother Siua had been accused of assaulting two men during a vicious bar fight that spilled out onto the street in Auckland in December 2012. Two men were injured in the brawl, with the former having been taken to hospital with a cut artery and facial cuts, allegedly caused by a bottle.
The 24-year-old player was found not guilty on two other charges of assault. 25-year-old Siua Moala was found not guilty on all charges.
George Moala said that he had not been involved in the fight inside the bar because his girlfriend had held him back but admitted later that he had hit one of the men outside the bar, because he had punched the his girlfriend.
During the trial this week the court heard largely differing accounts of how the alcohol-fuelled brawl, involving dozens of people, unfolded.
Crown prosecutor Josh Shaw alleged the Moala brothers and members of their party had perpetrated a “merciless” attack on two “defenceless” men following an argument, but the accused claimed self-defence.
Moala was sanctioned by the Blues when he was arrested two years ago, because he didn’t keep the team informed. He nevertheless continued to play Super Rugby while he awaited trial.
Moala has been remanded on bail until his sentencing in May.