Wellington: Former Samoan captain Brian Lima, who`s in the rugby hall of fame, faces up to seven years in jail after being found guilty of assaulting his former wife, it was reported Monday.
The 42-year-old Lima had denied multiple charges of causing grievous bodily harm, being armed with a dangerous weapon and using threatening words, the Samoa Observer said.
The Samoa Supreme Court heard that Lima was involved in a fight with his former wife Sina Retzlaff outside a nightclub in the Pacific nation last December.
When finding Lima guilty of assault, Judge Ida Malosi said she was also satisfied he had used the threatening words "the person who touches me will die".
Lima will be sentenced on June 20, and the newspaper said he faced a maximum seven years in jail.
Lima and Retzlaff, who had three children, were divorced in 2011.
At the time of his arrest, his wife allowed photographs to be published by the newspaper which showed her with two black eyes and a stitched cut on her nose, and campaigned against domestic violence.
"It doesn`t have any boundaries in terms of culture or religion, it can happen to anyone and I believe it does happen to women from all walks of life," she said.
A United Nations survey in 2010 found 46 percent of women in Samoa reported suffering from physical or sexual abuse when in a relationship.
It said men were generally regarded as the head of the household in Samoa and often wielded domestic power, with women reluctant to complain to authorities about abuse.
During his 61-Test career, Lima was dubbed "The Chiropractor" for his crunching tackles that supposedly rearranged the bones of his target.
He is the only player to have appeared in five Rugby World Cups, and in 2011 was inducted into the International Rugby Board`s Hall of Fame.