Wallaby legend arrested in Japan on NYE
RUGBY UNION: Wallabies great George Smith is under investigation for allegedly pushing a taxi driver after running off without paying a fare in Japan.
The decorated rugby union star is alleged to have been embroiled in the incident on New Year's Eve while he was an injured member of the Suntory Sungoliath club.
Respected Japanese news website, Yomiuri Online, is reporting that Smith ran off without paying a $113 (10,000 Yen fare) at around 12.10am on New Year's Eve in Fuchu, a city in the greater Tokyo metropolitan area.
Smith is alleged to have been drinking and has spoken with police and the incident is being investigated.
Smith, 37, is denying the allegations, according to the report posted by Yomiuri Online.
The flanker is expected back in Brisbane next week to continue rehabilitation after back surgery before making a late start to the Super Rugby season with the Queensland Reds.
According to the Yomiuri online report, when Smith ran away he was apprehended and arrested on suspicion by police.
It is alleged Smith hurt the chest and face of a 58-year-old male taxi driver chasing him.
Smith was taken to the Fuchu Police Station of the Metropolitan Police Department where he was investigated over the alleged fare evasion and injuries
Smith is one of the most decorated figures in Australian rugby union.
The champion flanker played 111 Tests for Australia and was one of the Reds' best last season when he made an unexpected return to Super Rugby.
The unwelcome drama compounds the off-field issues for the Reds, who are banking on a bright future under new coach Brad Thorn.
Karmichael Hunt is already heading to court on January 29 after being charged with two counts of alleged drug possession.
Wallaby Hunt was arrested on a Fortitude Valley roadside in Brisbane in the week before New Year.