R L Winger Posted May 27, 2021 Share Posted May 27, 2021 Sexual assault charges against NRL player Jack de Belin have been dropped after the jury in two separate trials failed to reach a verdict. His co-accused Callan Sinclair has also been cleared. Earlier this month the pair were found not guilty on one charge and the jury could not make a majority decision on the other five. The NSW Director of Public Prosecutions has confirmed it would not pursue the five charges for a third time. De Belin and Sinclair pleaded not guilty to all charges relating to the alleged assault of a then-19-year-old woman in a Wollongong unit in 2018. The woman alleged she was sexually assaulted by the pair, however, de Belin and Sinclair insisted the encounter was consensual. The decision has cleared the path for de Belin to return to playing rugby league for the St George Illawarra Dragons, NRL CEO Andrew Abdo confirmed this afternoon. De Belin had been stood down under the no-fault stand down rule, which means players cannot play if they are charged with a serious crime. "We make no apology for taking the hardest stance in Australian sport where our players are charged with serious criminal offences," Mr Abdo said. "We cannot remain indifferent to such charges, particularly those against women. "The 'No-Fault Stand Down' rule upholds the values of the game, protects the game's commercial relationships and provides safeguards for the very small number of players who find themselves the subject of serious criminal charges. "This is an example of our processes working. "Jack continued to be employed by the club and was able to extend his contract with the Dragons during the process. "The rule worked as it should." Dragons CEO Ryan Webb also released a statement, saying, "today's outcome concludes a tumultuous period for all involved in the Jack de Belin matter. "I wish to thank the support received by our partners, members and fans throughout this entire process." The Dragons also confirmed de Belin wpuld remain at the club until at least the end of the 2023 season following the DDP's decision. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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