The white van containing the 24-year-old and three men involved in the attack left the site on their way south. Two other men followed in the black Toyota Hilux.
Police said the victim was driven to a vacant unit in Auburn Road, Auburn, where he was detained for several hours.
Officers said the victim around 6 p.m. 19 the same day was found by a member of the public with a stab wound to the shoulder at Wellington Road, Birrong. He was taken to Liverpool Hospital for treatment and has since been released.
Detective Inspector Andrew Koutsoufis said police believe the attack and the kidnapping, which took place at a pre-arranged meeting, are related to a fake COVID-19 vaccination certificate fraud and related debt.
“This is a cheeky, brutal attack on a suburban street in broad daylight,” he said.
“Money was exchanged in relation to the false vaccination certificates, that is what we claim, and that is where the debt comes into play.
“This kind of behavior has no place in our society and these men need to be held accountable.”
The driver of the Toyota C-HR is described as being a man of Mediterranean / Middle Eastern appearance, with short hair, black beard and last seen wearing a white hoodie.
“Inquiries suggest that the occupant of the black Toyota C-HR, with the NSW number plates EBJ43A, is known to the injured man and would have information crucial to this investigation,” said Inspector Koutsoufis.
“At this time, I do not know his exact involvement, but I would like him to come forward and talk to us about the incident.”
The driver of the Hiace is described as being of medium build and was last seen wearing a black hoodie, red shorts and black running shoes.
Police said the front passenger was of a solid build and was wearing a black shirt with a gray hood and red letters on the sleeve, black training pants and pale joggers, while the other passenger was of large build wearing a black baseball cap, black hoodie, black training pants, black running shoes and wore an expandable relay.
Police said the driver of the Hilux was wearing a black baseball cap, black hoodie, black training pants and black joggers. The passenger was wearing a black baseball cap, black hoodie, gray training pants and black joggers with white / red soles.
The white Toyota Hiace had NSW license plates – BK59LG, and the black Toyota Hilux had NSW license plates – AMEBLD.
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