A TAXI driver was battered and robbed after confronting a passenger who damaged his car.

The attack happened when the cabbie stopped at the Texaco petrol station in Albert Road, Farnworth, at the request of one of his four passengers.

There, one of the four men, who he had picked up outside The Swan in Bolton, damaged his car door as he got out, prompting the driver to get out and have a look.

When the passenger came back to the taxi, the driver asked him what had happened.

The man then attacked the driver before rummaging through his pockets and stealing cash, before running away with the other three men along Albert Road towards King Street.

The driver was taken to hospital with facial injuries that needed stitches.

Detectives have now released a CCTV image of the man they are trying to trace.

He is white, 20 to 25 years old, medium build and was wearing a long-sleeved white shirt.

Police are also trying to identify a woman caught on CCTV who witnessed the incident.

Det Con Jon Marsh said: “The victim was trying to earn an honest living, having worked all night and into the early hours of the morning.

“I am releasing the CCTV images from the petrol forecourt in the hope someone will know who the offender is.

“I am also keen to speak to the woman, who we believe will have seen what happened.

“I want to stress she could be a valuable witness and is not under suspicion of any offence.

“If anyone has any information about either person please get in touch.”

Anyone with information is asked to call police on 0161 8565608, or Crimestoppers, anonymously, on 0800 555111.