It should have been a wonderful night out at a casino in Pretoria, South Africa.
But for film star and catwalk queen Mirriam Ngomani and her fiancé Tobias Zehetleitner it was nothing but.
The white German businessman and black model were brutally beaten after an alleged racist attack by star rugby players. Mirriam has been left with a broken leg.
The Hotel Rwanda star’s agent says the group of at least five white men who attacked them are well known patrons of the casino and players from a “famous rugby club.”
The shocking incident happened at 3am on July 11, at the exclusive Time Square Casino.
Mirriam and her husband to be Tobias were queuing to cash up their winnings and lovingly holding hands.
That’s when they say a white man flicked a lit cigarette towards Mirriam.
When Tobias confronted the man he allegedly said, “What’s wrong with you man? You are dating a baboon, a monkey.”
“Two of his white friends pulled him away but after we had cashed our winnings we had to walk past six or seven of these white guys and one called her “kaffir” and “black b****,” Tobias said.
“Three jumped on me and all and were giving me a kicking on the ground and I saw Mirriam being attacked so shrugged these three off and bundled a couple of guys off of my fiancée.”
“Then they all attacked me at once. I can handle three but five or six or seven or however many it was was too much and I was beaten unconscious and when I came round they had all gone,” Tobias explained.
When he came to, Tobias was devastated to find his partner in agony, with her left leg badly broken.
“The foot was pointing away at 90 degrees and she had been slapped round the face and been kicked,” Tobias said.
“She is in so much agony and has so many painkillers and has just had a major operation to fix her leg but the obvious fear for her as a model is will she be scarred or left with a limp.”
Tobias, who is originally from Munich, says his partner is well known as a high fashion model.
“Mirriam is known as the Catwalk Queen for her distinctive walk and teaches it to all the beauty pageant contestants and new models. She is the Naomi Campbell of South Africa.”
“But if she cannot walk properly or is badly scarred this could end her modelling career.”
Tobias claims the culprits were “well-known sportsmen” and he expected an arrest would be made “very quickly.”
He has already consulted his lawyers and is prepared to “ruin their careers” because they had “no qualms about trying to ruin Mirriam’s.”
“I have been asked not to say more until the police are ready to make arrests but these guys are rugby players from a well known rugby team so this is all very sensitive.”
But this was not the first time they had been subjected to racist abuse in the area.
“As an interracial couple we have never had any trouble in townships or in Cape Town or Johannesburg, but in Pretoria where we both live we get vile racist abuse all the time,” Tobias said.
“It is just so wrong to have to put up with this sort of racial abuse.”
Time Square Casino confirmed an attack took place at the entrance to the casino and general manager Brett Hoppe said: “Paramedics treated an injured woman at the on-site clinic.”
“Time Square is currently reviewing all the CCTV footage for an internal investigation and we are supporting South African Police Service in their investigation,” Hoppe revealed.
Sadly because of the unprovoked attack, Tobias and Mirriam have had postpone their wedding.
Mirriam who is a celebrity model in South Africa and has her own agency K-Mile Models said she was in a lot of pain after the “sick and disgusting attack.”
“Doctors have told me that my leg is broken and will take a very long time to heal maybe as much as three months.”
“I am so scared and terrified that my legs have been scarred and I don’t know if I will ever be able to show them off again and do my modelling on the catwalk if there are bad scars.”
“They will have to pay for this as what they did was evil and I would like them to be put in prison and never come out. Why do they do this just because we are different colours?”
A South African Police Service spokesman confirmed the attack on Thursday last week and that they are investigating and said they would be no comment until arrests were made.
Mirriam Ngomani has appeared in Hotel Rwanda and Lord of War with Nicolas Cage. She is also one of the best known catwalk queens in South Africa.
Meanwhile Tobias Zehetleitner, 36, is the chief executive officer of the charity TMT Sports Group which was founded by his fiancée and helps poor children in townships.