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Australia Rugby League-NRL to probe drug, violence claims against Burgess

12:34  02 october  2020
12:34  02 october  2020 Source:   reuters.com

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Burgess , who represented England in rugby league and rugby union at the 2015 World Cup, retired from the NRL last year but has worked in a coaching role at the Rabbitohs. The NRL said it had instructed its integrity unit to conduct a "comprehensive investigation" into the allegations against the

Australian police and the National Rugby League ( NRL ) have launched investigations into allegations of drugs , violence and a cover-up involving former England star Sam Burgess and the South Sydney Rabbitohs, officials said Friday. Burgess , through his lawyer, has denied the claims

MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Australia's National Rugby League (NRL) said on Friday it would investigate allegations of drug abuse and domestic violence involving former England international Sam Burgess and the South Sydney Rabbitohs team.

Sam Burgess wearing a blue shirt: England's Sam Burgess during training © Reuters/John Sibley England's Sam Burgess during training

The Australian newspaper said in a report that South Sydney had covered up misconduct by former captain Burgess during his playing career at the club.

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Australian police and the National Rugby League ( NRL ) have launched investigations into allegations of drugs , violence and a cover-up involving former England star Burgess , through his lawyer, has denied the claims , which included the need for a liquid tranquiliser after a drug -fuelled binge, testing

Australian police and the National Rugby League ( NRL ) have launched investigations into allegations of drugs , violence and a Burgess , through his lawyer, has denied the claims , which included the need for a liquid tranquiliser after a drug -fuelled binge, failed drugs tests and violence against his

Burgess, who represented England in rugby league and rugby union at the 2015 World Cup, retired from the NRL last year but has worked in a coaching role at the Rabbitohs.

The NRL said it had instructed its integrity unit to conduct a "comprehensive investigation" into the allegations against the Rabbitohs and 31-year-old Burgess.

"These allegations are very serious and I’ve instructed the Integrity Unit to investigate the claims as a priority," NRL Chief Executive Andrew Abdo said in a statement.

"We will also seek the advice of police and other relevant authorities throughout this process."

Most of the allegations in The Australian's report were made by Burgess's estranged wife Phoebe and father-in-law.

Burgess's lawyer Mark O'Brien rejected them all.

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  Rabbitohs Officials Respond To Cover-Up Claims Amid Explosive Sam Burgess Allegations A report in The Australian Newspaper on Friday resulted in Sam Burgess standing down from his roles with the Rabbitohs and Fox Sports.Burgess is being investigated by both NSW Police and the NRL Integrity Unit in response to the bombshell report which included allegations of substance abuse and domestic violence.

Australian police and the National Rugby League ( NRL ) have launched investigations into allegations of drugs , violence and a cover-up involving former England star Sam Burgess and the South Sydney Rabbitohs, officials said Friday. Burgess , through his lawyer, has denied the claims

Sam Burgess ' lawyer denies sensational claims about the former England rugby league star. A report in The Australian alleges incidents of domestic violence , drug use and harassment involving Burgess were covered up by his former NRL club South Sydney Rabbitohs.

"It is apparent sources of the false allegations are those currently in dispute with my client over various issues," O'Brien told The Australian.

Hours after the NRL said they would investigate, Burgess stepped down from his coaching role at the Rabbitohs and his TV job with Fox League, a rugby league channel.

"I have today stood down from all work commitments," Burgess said in a statement posted on Fox League's Twitter account.

South Sydney, which is co-owned by Hollywood actor Russell Crowe, did not provide immediate comment when contacted by Reuters.

In a statement, New South Wales state police said: "On Wednesday 30th September officers from the Hume Police District received a report outlining various allegations relating to the conduct of a 31-year-old man.

"Police have commenced inquiries, however as these inquiries are in their infancy there will be no further comment made at this time."

Father-of-two Burgess became estranged from his wife Phoebe last year and was charged with intimidation by police after visiting the home of his father-in-law last October.

He pleaded not guilty to the charge in December.

Burgess was instrumental in the Rabbitohs winning the NRL's 2014 championship, ending the club's 43-year title drought.

(Reporting by Ian Ransom; Editing by Michael Perry)

Sam Burgess poses with his mum while enjoying the Rabbitohs game .
Mrs Burgess uploaded a picture of the pair in Twitter on Saturday night as the family continue to rally around the 31-year-old following a raft of explosive allegations of his personal life.Mrs Burgess shared a photo of the pair on Saturday night as the family continues to rally around the 31-year-old following a raft of allegations about his personal life.

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