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Two Australian men have been arrested in Phuket over the accidental shooting of two German tourists.

A Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade spokesman confirmed John Edward Cohen, 33, from NSW, and Adam Lewis Shea, 26, from Tasmania, had been arrested in connection with the shooting.

Lawyers said the men were involved in an altercation with a Danish man over a motorbike.

Cohen, a long-time resident of the island, allegedly fired a pistol and accidentally hit the tourists at Patong Beach yesterday, they said.

The Phuket Wan newspaper said Johann Baschenegger, 41, was admitted to hospital in a serious condition.

Joseph Woerner, 71, was in a satisfactory condition.

Police said the shooting occurred around 7.45pm near the Baan Pirin Hotel where the Germans were staying.

The Australians allegedly fled after the shooting but were tracked down to a local bar.

Both men are reported to have links with a motorcycle club known as the Rebel MC.

Lawyers were on today trying to have the men released on bail.

Officials said the Australian men were receiving consular assistance.