Burgess cops fine mammoth, NRL suspension | Liverpool City Champion

Former South Sydney star Sam Burgess has been handed a huge punishment for a series of incidents during his time at the club.

And the Rabbitohs were also fined $20,000 for failing to promptly notify the NRL of an allegation made against Burgess.

The 33-year-old was fined $30,000 and suspended for 12 weeks as an official after using illegal drugs and threatening another rugby league player in 2018, and for breaking the law of New South Wales in February 2021 when he drove with drugs in his system.

Burgess played for the Bunnies again in 2018, when he was part of their 2021 offense football team.

He stepped down in October 2020, but with his backdated suspension he can return to his role immediately.

The NRL investigation did not find sufficient evidence that Burgess had allegedly committed domestic abuse, while it notes that other allegations regarding his personal relationships are unrelated to NRL rules.

This conclusion is consistent with the findings of NSW Police Strike Force Irrabella.

Meanwhile, South Sydney have been fined for failing to promptly notify the NRL’s Integrity Unit of an allegation against Burgess, but the league has found no evidence the club attempted to cover up illicit and prescription drug use and allegations of domestic violence.

The league statement notes that the treatment a club doctor gave Burgess at his home after a medical incident was in his capacity as a private doctor, meaning the club were not told of it out of confidentiality.

A statement from South Sydney said they accepted the fine.

“The Rabbitohs wish to reiterate that there is no place in our society for violence, harassment or abuse against women,” it read.

“The club also takes drug use issues very seriously and has policies and procedures in place regarding drug use.

“The club works closely with the player group to support their wellbeing and educate them about drug use, and also works closely with Sport Integrity Australia and the NRL who administer player testing.”

Australian Associated Press

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