Tom Hardy sought help and support for a teenage moped thief he apprehended last year.

The 40-year-old actor - who has previously battled drug and alcohol addiction - pursued a young man through gardens and a building site in the suburban area of London in April 2017 after the 16 year old allegedly crashed a stolen moped, and though police took over after he made a citizen's arrest, he later tracked down the youth to try and get him back on the right path.

He told the new issue of America's Esquire magazine: ''He must stand accountable for what he's done. But he's got issues, and he's in a bad way. Do we just give up on a 16 year old?''

The 'Venom' actor also insisted the incident wasn't as dramatic as reports made out.

He said: ''It wasn't much of a chase; when I found him, he was in f***ing rag order.''

At the time of the chase, Tom - who has 10-year-old son Louis with his ex-girlfriend Rachel Speed and a two year old with his wife Charlotte Riley - was hailed a ''superhero'' when he gave chase through gardens and a building site.

Eyewitness Arun Pullen said: ''It was mental - like he'd switched to superhero mode in an action movie.''

The onlooker said Tom sped off in pursuit of the youngster as soon as he saw the incident unfold.

He explained: ''Two boys on the nicked moped had jumped a red light and smashed into a car.

''Tom must have been walking down the road. He went off like a shot in pursuit and looked furious. If the kid had been dumb enough to resist I reckon Tom would have given him a good hiding.''

After catching the alleged criminal at a bus stop, Tom searched him for weapons and proudly told onlookers: ''I caught the ****.''

Arun admitted Tom lived up to his fearsome reputation during the citizen's arrest, saying he left the alleged thief looking ''wrecked and in shock''.

He explained: ''Tom Hardy's clearly not a man you'd mess with. I think he even checked the kid's ID before cops took over.''