LOS ANGELES (CN) - A paparazzo claims in court that Justin Bieber assaulted and battered him with a flying "martial arts-type" kick outside a mall.
Jose Osmin Hernandez Duran sued Bieber in Superior Court.
He claims he crossed paths with Bieber, then 18, on May 27, 2012, at the Commons shopping center in Calabasas, where Bieber had gone to see a movie with his then-girlfriend Selena Gomez.
As Bieber crossed the parking lot to his Mercedes-Benz Sprinter van, he encountered Hernandez, other photographers and a small crowd of fans, according to the complaint.
Hernandez claims that Bieber, "an inexperienced driver of such a large vehicle," "struggled" to get the 23-foot van through the parking lot crowded with other cars and people.
Hernandez says he was not the only photographer standing close to the Sprinter when Bieber yelled in his direction: "'Fuck off! Get out of the way!'"
The complaint continues: "Defendant then closed the door and continued to try to drive the Mercedes Sprinter van. A few seconds later, defendant put the Mercedes Sprinter van in park, opened the driver-side door all the way, and leapt out. He sprinted as fast as he could toward plaintiff. When he was approximately six to eight feet from plaintiff, he jumped toward plaintiff and delivered a martial arts-type kick, using his right foot to strike plaintiff in the lower rib cage on the left side of his abdomen. The force of the kick pushed plaintiff's body up against a parked car behind him, and caused defendant to fall to the ground; one of defendant's shoes and his hat fell off and he dropped his cell phone on the ground nearby. Defendant sprang to his feet and used his left fist to punch plaintiff hard on the right side of plaintiff's face, and he then pushed plaintiff back against the parked car using both hands. During this unwarranted and unlawful attack, plaintiff held his camera in his right hand and pleaded with plaintiff to stop, stating in sum and substance, 'Justin you do not have to do this,' as he held his left hand up, palm out, in a submissive gesture.
"Ms. Gomez got out of the Mercedes Sprinter van and approached defendant, stating in sum and substance, 'Justin, stop! They're taking your picture!' A middle-aged woman who was watching also rushed to stand between defendant and plaintiff, and implored defendant to stop as well.
"Ms. Gomez helped defendant retrieve his fallen articles and escorted him back to the Mercedes Sprinter van. They got in the Mercedes Sprinter van and defendant recklessly sped away at a high and unsafe rate of speed.
"A few minutes later, defendant and Ms. Gomez returned to the scene in the Mercedes Sprinter van, and Ms. Gomez got out and began looking around the area of the assault, stating that she was looking for her cellular telephone. Upon seeing plaintiff, she said to him, 'I'm sorry, I don't know why he did that,' ..."
Hernandez claims that Bieber's bodyguard, Moshe Benabou then showed up and "said, among other things, 'I taught him [defendant] how to fight!'" (Brackets in complaint.)
Hernandez seeks punitive damages for assault and battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, and negligence.
He is represented by Steven Madison with Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan.
A legal representative for Bieber could not immediately be reached for comment after business hours Wednesday.
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