Known for his evasive skills on the rugby field, Losi Filipo today misdirected media after being sentenced on assault charges at the High Court in Wellington.
Wearing a baseball cap, and the exact same shirt as Losi, his brother Sam masqueraded as Losi and was questioned by media leaving court.
Those close to Losi have confirmed the switch to 1 NEWS and said they were trying to protect Losi's mental health.
His brother Sam, who has a similar appearance to Losi, was previously convicted for his role in the same assault on four people, including two women in Wellington last October.
Losi Filipo, 18, was sentenced to nine months supervision, after having his previous discharge without conviction sentence overturned.
He had retained his earlier guilty plea.
As conditions of his sentence Justice David Collins ordered that Filipo attend a drug and alcohol assessment programme and a living without violence programme.
Justice Collins ordered that the $1000 Filipo has paid to the District Court will be paid to the victims by way of reparation.
The mother of victim Kelsey Odell says "the sentence is better than the last one. We are just glad it's over".
Filipo's lawyer Noel Sainsbury said "Losi is sorry and wants to move on with his life".
Filipo was given the chance to withdraw his guilty plea after his discharge without conviction was overturned by the High Court last week after the judge determined the District Court had understated the seriousness of his offending and the consequences for the victims.
Filipo had last month admitted in court attacking four people in Wellington's CBD in October 2015. But Judge Davidson said a conviction would unfairly impact on his pro rugby career.
The Solicitor General looked into the case and allowed police to challenge the sentence after a public outcry over Filipo being discharged, partly to save his rugby career.
Filipo's contract with the Wellington Lions was mutually terminated following huge public pressure.
Outside court, Filipo's lawyer Noel Sainsbury said his client was "sorry and wants to move on with his life".