NEW YORK (Reuters) - Some decidedly unprincely behavior at a New York City nightclub over the weekend landed a fist in the face of Prince of Monaco Pierre Casiraghi and sent a local man to court on assault charges, an attorney said on Monday.
Four men were allegedly pummeled by restaurateur Adam Hock, 47, in a dispute at The Double Seven club in the trendy Meatpacking District about 2 a.m. Saturday, police said.
"An individual now known to me from the criminal complaint as the prince was with others harassing my client and acting like little children, name calling and trying to attack my client," said Hock's attorney Sal Strazzullo.
He said Hock, owner of the Hawaiian Tropic Zone, a now-defunct eatery in Times Square that featured bikini-clad servers, was acting in self defense when he decked the 24-year-old prince and members of his entourage.
"Unless you're a ninja fighter or Bruce Lee, it's pretty tough to defend yourself against four men," Strazzullo said.
Hock was released from Manhattan Criminal Court without bail after he pleaded not guilty to four counts of assault, he said.
Police declined to comment on whether the four men, ages 24 to 33, suffered injuries, saying only "each was struck in the face with a closed fist."
Asked what sparked the confrontation, Strazzullo said, "Who the hell knows? A lot of individuals think they have a right of entitlement, that they are above the law."
There was no immediate response to calls placed to an attorney for Casiraghi, who lives in Italy and is third in line to the throne of Monaco, a Mediterranean country smaller than New York's Central Park.
He is the son of Princess of Caroline of Monaco and her second husband, who was killed in a boating accident when Pierre was a young child.
"The attitude is all about title and lands. But they have a good race there - Formula 1," said Strazzullo, referring to Monaco's famed Grand Prix.
(Reporting by Barbara Goldberg, Editing by Ellen Wulfhorst)