Knights player involved in alleged assault
Newcastle recruit Russell Packer has been interviewed by police over an alleged assault in Sydney in the latest off-field incident involving an NRL player.
On Tuesday, only a day after Manly prop Richie Fa’aoso was charged over an alleged domestic incident involving his wife, the Knights issued a statement saying they were aware of Packer’s involvement in an alleged Sydney assault on Friday night.
The news came on the same day Canterbury back-rower Reni Maitua was charged with assaulting a taxi driver in Sydney’s south-east.
The NRL has been advised and the NRL integrity unit is investigating, the statement said.
“The club will co-operate with the police and the NRL,” it continued.
“Until all investigations are complete, the club will make no further comment.”
The Newcastle Herald reported that police are continuing investigations into the incident involving Packer who notoriously urinated on the field before a game during the 2013 season.
With most clubs only back in pre-season for a couple of weeks and the Rugby League World Cup still being played in Britain it has made for a busy time for the NRL’s Integrity Unit, which was established last season.
The NRL released a statement on Tuesday in which it said it was investigating each of the incidents.
“We must all accept the need to establish the relevant facts and the Integrity Unit will carry out that task with the cooperation of the clubs,” NRL chief operating officer Jim Doyle said.
“If however breaches are established then we will act accordingly.
“The Integrity Unit has provided a clear mechanism for assessing behavioural issues and we have already shown this year that we will act on the outcomes.
“The overwhelming majority of our players are fantastic ambassadors both for the game and the community. It is all the more important, therefore, that we send clear messages in relation to off-field misbehaviour.