Big wave surfer Koby Abberton locked himself in a car then stripped off his clothes on a busy Sydney street when police tried to search him for drugs.
Abberton, a founding member of the notorious Bra Boys beach gang from Maroubra, in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, failed to appear in court on Monday on several charges.
The 39-year-old was due to face a hearing at Waverley Local Court into allegations of hindering police, offensive conduct and not carrying a driver’s licence.
Abberton, who once appeared in a Russell Crowe-narrated documentary about the Bra Boys along with his brothers and fellow surfers Sunny and Jai, was fined $1,000 in his absence.
When the matter was listed before the same court last year, a lawyer on behalf of Abberton provided a doctor’s certificate stating the surfer could not travel from his Bali home due to a bad back.
This time there was no explanation. Abberton’s social media accounts appear to show he has been back in Australia recently.
Abberton is married to Olya Nechiporenko, a Ukrainian model, psychologist and accountant. The couple has a son, Makua, born in July 2015.
He was previously in a relationship with model Tahyna Tozzi and gave surfing lessons to heiress Paris Hilton.
Abberton was driving a silver Hyundai SUV when police pulled him over at the intersection of Bronte Road and Birrell Street, Bondi Junction, about 6.20pm on October 12, 2016.
According to a statement of facts tendered to the court, another man was in the front passenger seat.
‘After introducing themselves, police asked the accused to produce his driver’s licence,’ the statement said.
‘The accused failed to do this and stated “I don’t have it. I lost it in Bali.”‘
Abberton then provided his name and date of birth and showed police a picture of his licence on his phone.
‘While speaking to the accused police detected a strong odour of cannabis coming from the accused and from within the vehicle,’ the tendered statement said.
‘Due to this and known intelligence about the accused police suspected he may have in his possession or in the vehicle a prohibited drug.’
Police told Abberton they were going to search him and his vehicle and explained why.
‘The accused refused to be searched and said “You’re not searching me and I won’t let you search my vehicle. It’s not my car. I don’t know what’s in it. You’re not searching me,”‘ the statement said.
‘Police again informed the accused he would be searched, provided the reason why, asked for his co-operation and told him it was an offence to refuse to comply.
‘Police then requested the accused and his passenger to get out of the vehicle.
‘The passenger complied. The accused again refused, locked the door and said “You’re not searching the car or me. I refuse. I’m locking the door. I won’t get out.
‘”You have to show me a bit of paper that says I have to comply and that you can search me. If you can’t, I’m not getting out.”‘
Abberton was again told to leave the vehicle and that he was committing an offence if he would not let police search him.
‘The accused again refused and yelled at police “You’re a f***ing dog. You’re not f***ing searching me of the car until I see a bit of paper.”‘
Abberton then opened the vehicle’s door, causing it to hit one of the officers in the legs. His next move was even more unexpected.
‘The accused continued to yell aggressively at police while stripping off his clothing down to his underwear and throwing the clothing on the ground,’ the statement said.
‘The accused yelled “Is someone filming this? F***ing film it!”
‘At this time a number of members of the public were near by including a mother, baby and her toddler.’
Abberton was told he was under arrest, put into a wrist lock, then handcuffed.
Police searched Abberton and the car but found ‘no items of interest’.
Magistrate Lisa Stapleton fined Abberton $500 for hindering police, $250 for offensive conduct and $250 for driving without a licence.
Abberton has had trouble with the law in the past.
In 2008 he spent three days in custody for assaulting an off-duty police officer in Honolulu, Hawaii.
In 2003, he became embroiled in his brother Jai’s woes when Jai was charged with murdering standover man Tony Hines.
Jai admitted shooting Hines but said he did so in self-defence and was acquitted of murder.
However, Koby was given a suspended nine month prison sentence after being found guilty of perverting the course of justice in relation to Jai’s case.
The Bra Boys gang, a ‘brotherhood’ based on surf culture, was formed in Marboubra in the 1990s and gained notoriety due violent behaviour by some members and alleged links to organised crime.