Police probe fatal crash that killed Jakob Opacic, brother of NRL star

The victim of a fatal motorcycle crash near a prison on the Gold Coast has been identified as the brother of NRL star Tom Opacic.

Tributes have flowed for Jakob Opacic, 28, after he died at the scene of the crash, at Natural Bridge, after 10am on Friday.

But police are investigating whether the incident may have been a hit-and-run following an altercation outside the Numinbah Correctional Centre prior to the crash.

Police on the scene of the crash in the Numinbah Valley.Source:Supplied

Police believe Jakob, from Bracalba, got into a verbal altercation with two men outside the jail just before 10.10am.

The crash occurred as he left and rode southbound along Nerang Murwillumbah Road for approximately three kilometres.

NCA NewsWire understands a man is assisting police with their inquiries after handing himself into Laidley Police Station at 2am on Saturday.

No charges have been laid.

Tributes have poured in for Jake Opacic, who died in a fatal motorbike crash on Friday.Source:Facebook

Jakob is the brother of Tom Opacic, a former Brisbane Bronco who also starred with the North Queensland Cowboys before moving to the Parramatta Eels.

Tom played against the Panthers just hours after learning of his brother’s death.

The entire Eels side wore black armbands during their match.

An Eels spokesman said the team was saddened to learn of Jakob’s sudden passing and extended their “thoughts and deepest sympathies to the Opacic family”.

Tom Opacic of the Eels is seen wearing a black armband for the death of his brother Jakob, during the round 16 NRL match between the Penrith Panthers and the Parramatta Eels. (Photo by Mark Kolbe/Getty Images)Source:Getty Images

“Tom was brave to play in tonight’s game under painful circumstances, and we will support him during this difficult time,” the spokesman said.

“On behalf of everybody at the Club, our members, fans, and partners, we send our sincerest condolences to Tom and his family.”

Tributes have also streamed over social media over the young man’s death.

“R. I. P Jake … taken way too soon, you had an impact on everyone you met and are greatly missed by all. Condolences to all your family, friends and all the boys that are really struggling today. Thinking of you all x,” Kirra-Lee Robson wrote on Facebook.

Jake Smith wrote: “RIP my brother, I can‘t believe your gone, taken way too young, I will always have so much love ya Jake Opacic”.

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