Wednesday 17 January 2018

Connacht rugby player in TV arrest out on police bail

Mils Muliaina
Mils Muliaina
Claire Mc Cormack

Claire Mc Cormack

The agent for former New Zealand All Black player Mils Muliaina has said he had "no idea" the player was going to be arrested just minutes after he lined out for Connacht on Friday night.

Agent Simon Porter made the comments following the arrest of Mr Muliaina after a European rugby match in the UK.

"No one saw this coming. Police just took him off the rugby pitch," he said - though in fact the player was led away after the game.

The World Cup-winning Connacht player was arrested in relation to an incident in Cardiff last month.

Minutes after Connacht's loss to Gloucester in the Challenge Cup, the player was led away from the rugby ground and put into a police van.

The incident was captured on Sky Sports cameras.

Gloucestershire Police issued a statement saying: "A man in his 30s was arrested at Kingsholm Stadium tonight (Friday, April 3) on suspicion of an alleged sexual assault in relation to an incident in Cardiff in March. It is a matter currently being dealt with by the South Wales Police."

The 34-year-old full-back played for 35 minutes of the first-half but was taken off with a leg injury as Connacht went on to lose 14-7 to Gloucester.

Mr Muliaina featured for Connacht in their defeat at the hands of Cardiff Blues in the Welsh capital on March 6 - but an exact date for the alleged incident is not known at this time.

A Connacht Rugby spokesperson said that the organisation was not in a position to comment.

In a statement the club confirmed "that player Mils Muliaina is currently assisting the South Wales Police with enquiries relating to an alleged incident in Cardiff in March of this year".

"As this is a legal matter, Connacht Rugby will be making no further comment at this time."

Earlier this week, Mr Muliaina, revealed plans to leave the western province at the end of his one-year stint after agreeing a move to Italian side Zebre.

He became the first All Black to play for Connacht when he signed last year. He was capped 100 times for the Kiwis

The team's head coach Pat Lam praised the player following his departure announcement.

"Even in one quick year, Mils has made a lasting contribution to Connacht Rugby. A big part of our growth as a team this season has been around challenging each other to reach higher standards and Mils was massive in driving this," he said.

He has been released on police bail pending further investigation, said a South Wales Police spokesman.

Sunday Independent

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