Police have cleared former NRL star Sam Burgess following a year-long investigation into allegations of abuse levelled by his ex-wife and outlined in explosive media reports last year.
High-profile lawyer Chris Murphy broke the news in a tweet about noon on Wednesday, saying the star footballer had “no case to answer” in regards to the claims made by Phoebe Burgess.
“NSW Police Operational Legal Advice unit just recommended no criminal prosecution(s) be preferred against Sam Burgess in relation to these allegations. That now concludes this investigation,” Mr Murphy wrote.’
NSW Police confirmed the development in a brief statement: “Following extensive inquiries, no further police action is expected to be taken.”
Mr Murphy went on to write that the South Sydney Rabbitohs great had been greatly affected by the allegations published in The Australian last year, detailing claims of drug abuse and domestic violence.
“Much hurt and harm has been done to Sam Burgess,” the lawyer posted on Twitter. “He has been damaged.
“He wants the public to be made aware that allegations have been thoroughly examined and at length by NSW Police and there is nothing for him to be called to answer.”
Police launched an investigation on September 30, 2020 after being made aware of a 50-page statement prepared by Ms Burgess, who had separated from her husband.
“On Wednesday 30 September 2020, officers from The Hume Police District received a report outlining various allegations relating to the conduct of a 31-year-old man,” a police spokesperson said at the time.
The allegations emerged amid the context of Mr Burgess being charged with intimidating his ex-partner’s father Mitchell Hooke.
It was claimed the star footballer had taken drugs throughout his career, been unfaithful and once assaulted a heavily-pregnant Ms Burgess.
At the time, lawyer Mark O’Brien, acting for Mr Burgess, strongly denied all allegations.
“The allegations are false and constitute an indefensible defamation against my client,” Mr O’Brien said.
“It is apparent sources of the false allegations are those currently in dispute with my client over various issues.”
Mr Burgess, 32, was in February convicted of intimidating Mr Hooke before he successfully appealed and overturned the decision in March.
Mr Hooke had claimed a “wild eyed” Mr Burgess had stood close to and threatened to “get him” during an argument at the Hooke family’s southern highlands home.
Mr Burgess denied the allegations.
In May this year, he pleaded guilty to driving with an illicit substance present in his bloodstream after testing positive to traces of cocaine during a roadside stop in February.
Mr Burgess was not convicted for the offence.
The father-of-two appeared recently on reality program SAS Australia and gave an emotional account of his struggles with his family implosion and legal issues.
In an interview on the show, he admitted to falling into a cycle of using drugs and drinking heavily before checking himself into a rehab clinic for four weeks.
He also confirmed previous reports he cheated on his then-wife with a woman in Melbourne, saying he had “embarrassed” Phoebe.
“Just completed 28 days of rehab. Because the last 18 months have been crazy. Everything I touched turned to sh*t. Decided to get back on my feet, I started coaching again,” Mr Burgess said on SAS.
“We started doing well. I got given the head coaching role. A lot of things were put in the press by my ex-wife and ex father-in-law. And consequently I had to stand down from both roles, so I lost it all again.
“Since then, there’s been a police investigation into me about some behaviour that she’s claimed. I turned to drinking, taking drugs.
“I thought I could manage it but it got to the point where I was pulled over for DUI with drugs in my system which is all over the press again and stops me from seeing my kids again and I just checked myself into rehab.”
Original source: https://www.foxsports.com.au/nrl/nrl-premiership/exnrl-star-sam-burgess-cleared-after-yearlong-police-investigation-into-allegations-of-abuse/news-story/155905767396ceb51adcbd49c638ca3f