Paper names England players in sex probe - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Paper names England players in sex probe

24/06/2008 04:48:53 PM Comments (0)

A British newspaper has named four England rugby union players alleged to have been caught up in rape and sexual assault allegations in New Zealand.

The London Sun's naming of Danny Care, David Strettle, Topsy Ojo and Mike Brown is the first time the identities of the four touring players has been revealed.

The players are alleged to have been involved in an incident at the team's luxury waterfront Hilton Hotel in Auckland after the All Blacks beat England 37-20 in the first rugby Test.

Backed by England management, the four say they are innocent of any wrongdoing, but refused to be interviewed by New Zealand police after taking legal advice.

Together with the rest of the England squad, they left New Zealand for home after Saturday's 44-12 second Test defeat by the New Zealand in Christchurch.

Two of the four, scrum-half Care and winger Ojo, played in the second Test.

New Zealand police said there was no reason to detain or restrict the movements of the players.

Police have said they are investigating "serious" allegations, but no formal complaint has been laid.

British media reports, quoting an England rugby source, claimed an 18-year-old woman had consensual sex with one player in his room before being joined by another squad member, with whom she also had consensual sex.

The reports said some of the sex was witnessed by two other players.

The Sun said the four players had been banned from speaking, so could not publicly declare their innocence.

The Sun quoted a source as saying: "The players involved feel under pressure and angry. They are single guys who said they did nothing wrong.

"Players who had nothing to do with it are furious too. The whole squad feels it will stay under a shadow until the air is cleared."

New Zealand police said while the woman who made the allegations had not made a formal statement, a complaint could be made at any time and would be followed up by police.

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