Model Gigi Hadid defends her actions after being lifted off the ground by celebrity prankster


Gigi Hadid has spoken about an incident in which she was targeted by a well-known trickster who targets famous names.

Video footage posted by celebrity news website TMZ shows the supermodel fighting to free herself after former Ukrainian television reporter Vitalii Sediuk approached her from behind in Milan and lifted her off the ground.

The supermodel was leaving a fashion week show when the prankster took her by surprise, causing her to lash out to get free.

Gigi Hadid
Gigi Hadid on the runway at Milan Fashion Week (Luca Bruno/AP/PA Images)

He then fled but Gigi chased after him, before being ushered back to her car by her bodyguard, whom she told to "go find that guy".

Vitalii has become known for his altercations with celebrities including Brad Pitt and Kim Kardashian West.

Gigi, 21, took to Twitter to comment on her response to the unprovoked incident, defending herself after another user posted a screengrab of a news report and suggested an alternative headline.

The amended headline read: "GOOD FOR HER: Gigi Hadid Reacts In Totally Appropriate Way When Random Man Tries To Lift Her In The Street."

The American model wrote: "THANK YOU Rachel. To unknown article writer: fan?!!! The ACTUAL fans that were there can tell you what happened. I'm a HUMAN BEING.

"And had EVERY RIGHT to defend myself. How dare that idiot thinks he has the right to man-handle a complete stranger. He ran quick tho (sic)."

In an email to The Associated Press, Vitalii confirmed he was the person who lifted Gigi off the ground, saying it was a form of protest against the use of celebrity models.

He said: "While I consider Gigi Hadid beautiful, she and her friend Kendall Jenner have nothing to do with high fashion.

"By doing this I encourage the fashion industry to put true talents on the runway and Vogue covers instead of well-connected cute girls from Instagram. You can call it a manifest or a protest."

Vitalii Sediuk
In 2014, Vitalii Sediuk went to court in Los Angeles as he faced four misdemeanour charges in connection with an alleged May 28 attack on actor Brad Pitt at a Los Angeles movie premiere. (Kevork Djansezian/AP/PA Images)

In 2014, he was charged and ordered to stay away from Brad and Hollywood red carpet events after he leaped from a fan area and made contact with the actor during the premiere of Maleficent in Los Angeles.

Vitalii offered a plea of no contest to battery during a court appearance three days later.

Several months later, there was an encounter with Kim in Paris that saw her stumble after being jostled by someone in a crowd.

Gigi Hadid
Gigi Hadid was back on the runway following the incident (Luca Bruno/AP/PA Images)

Vitalii took ownership of the incident and claimed he had been trying to hug her.

Hours after the incident with Gigi, she was on the runway at the Fendi show.