NZ Rugby Union officials have apologised to the four young people who were assaulted by rising rugby star Losi Filipo.
NZRU head Steve Tew yesterday promised to personally get in touch with each of the four victims - Kelsey Odell, 22, her partner Hayden Williams, 22, Greg Morgan, 21 and Olivia Samuel, 22 - to offer the union's formal apology.
Tew made the promise during an interview with Paul Henry yesterday morning, in which he was lambasted by Henry for not calling the victims earlier.
Tew said Wellington Rugby - which had contracted Filipo as one of its players - did not know the severity of the attack and had been following court proceedings without that knowledge.
Had management known the full details, the call would have probably been made for Filipo not to play.
Tew acknowledged that the termination of Filipo's contract with Wellington Rugby, on Tuesday, had come "too late'' and that that was something to learn from, going forward.
The NZRU's apologies came after a huge public outcry that followed a court decision to discharge Filipo without conviction, last month, after he and his older brother, Sam Filipo, assaulted the group of friends in the early hours of Sunday, October 11, last year.
The group had spent the night out in town, in the Wellington CBD, to celebrate Samuel's birthday.
Court documents say the Filipo brothers assaulted the two men before assaulting the two women.
Odell confirmed to the last night that someone from the NZRU had contacted her family and formally apologised to her parents. It is understood the others - or their families - had also received a phone call at some point yesterday.
The group have said they will appeal the decision made by District Court Judge Bruce Davidson last month.
The decision has led to a massive debate on social media, with commentators, bloggers and members of the public blasting the Judge. Some have gone as far as to call for his resignation.
Neither Filipo, nor his family, have spoken out about the incident; save for a statement he provided to media on Tuesday, in which he apologised to his victims.
He said he recognised that he had been given a second chance and promised to use that opportunity to work hard.
"I understand why the victims of the assault do not want to talk to me and have not taken up an offer of restorative justice, but I would like to publicly apologies for my actions and the damage they caused.
"I made a huge mistake that my victims and myself will have to live with for the rest of our lives."