Kelleher fined, gets suspended jail term - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Kelleher fined, gets suspended jail term

29/10/2009 02:36:01 PM Comments (0)

Former All Blacks scrum-half Byron Kelleher was handed a two-month suspended prison sentence and fined 3,500 euros ($A5,735) on Wednesday for his part in a drink-fuelled scuffle following a car accident.

The 32-year-old Toulouse star admitted his guilt to both having hit out at the people in the other car and also for being drunk while driving his car during the incident on September 11.

Kelleher, capped 57 times by the All Blacks and a member of three World Cup squads, accepted the punishment proposed by the prosecutor.

He did not have his driving licence taken away as the level of alcohol in his blood was not taken at the time.

Two other people who were in his car also received two month suspended prison sentences.

Kelleher issued a statement accepting his punishment.

"The punishment delivered appears to me to be justified and corresponds to the seriousness with which I took this incident," he said.

"I would like to reiterate my sincere apologies to those who would have found my behaviour shocking and now wish to draw a close to the matter, turn the page and to go back to my career."

Michel Valet, the Toulouse prosecutor, said that Kelleher's star status had not led him to him being treated any differently to anyone else.

"This case was dealt with in the most neutral manner possible," said Valet.

"The fact he was a professional rugby player did not enter the equation."

Kelleher, who injured his shoulder and right eye in the incident, admitted to his sorrow in an interview last month.

"When you make a mistake you have to own up to it, to have the courage to square up to it and say sorry," he said.

"Our cars collided. It should never have escalated like it did. I got stupidly angry, due for sure to drink. I was mixing with the wrong types.

"I don't want people in Toulouse to believe I'm proud of what happened, I have different values than that."

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