A Macau lawyer assaulted in broad daylight in the Chinese gambling haven says the attack was an attempt to intimidate him.

The two assailants used bricks to bash the lawyer, Jorge Menezes, on the head before fleeing in last week's attack.

The former Portuguese colony has largely shed its reputation for triad violence.

Menezes said Monday he believed the attack was intended to intimidate him over his work but he wouldn't say who he thought was behind it.

Macau was rocked by gangland killings in the run-up to its handover to China in 1999 but violence abated as its gambling industry boomed and foreigners opened casinos.

Authorities are eager to brand the city as a family-friendly travel and entertainment destination.

Menezes is involved in high-profile legal cases in Macau.