Illawarra man Robert ‘Boxer’ Nikolovski has been acquitted of an affray charge over a violent brawl outside Fever nightclub involving ex-Rebel-turned-Finks bikie president Troy Fornaciari.
A NSW District Court jury sat through two days worth of evidence from witnesses including club security guards working on the night, however took a matter of minutes to find Nikolovski not guilty of the charge on Wednesday afternoon after his lawyers argued he had been acting in self defence.
The court heard Nikolovski and Fornaciari were both at the nightclub with separate parties in the early hours of September 13, 2014 when Fornaciari allegedly violently assaulted one of Nikolovski’s friends inside the toilet block after making a pass at the man’s girlfriend.
One of the security guards told the court he arrived at the toilets to find Nikolovski holding an aggressive Fornaciari back and trying to calm him down.
At the request of bouncers, Nikolovski then walked Fornaciari down a set of stairs and out into the rear carpark while telling him it was time to leave.
“Rob was saying ‘come on Troy, let’s just go, you’ve had a good night’,” one of Nikolovski’s friends told the court.
“Troy was telling Rob to come around the corner so he could fight him.”
The man said Fornaciari then grabbed Nikolovski’s shirt, which had belonged to his late brother Goran, and ripped it slightly.
“Rob said ‘can you please not rip my shirt because it’s my brothers’, but Troy grabbed it him in the same position and ripped it again,” the man said.
CCTV footage shows Nikolovski punch Fornaciari three times, leaving him dazed on the footpath for about five minutes before he got up and walked around the corner to a waiting car, apparently uninjured.
Meantime, Fornaciari refused to answer most questions asked of him during his brief but explosive testimony on Tuesday.
He refused to be brought into court for the proceedings and appeared only via video link, where he gave standard “I don’t recall” responses at any time he wasn’t calling Nikolovski’s lawyer “a f—king dog”.