Taylor avoids AFL sanction from Richmond - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Taylor avoids AFL sanction from Richmond

By Sam Lienert and Gail Liston 30/03/2010 08:51:34 PM Comments (0)

Richmond first-year AFL forward Troy Taylor will argue he was acting in self-defence when he contests assault charges.

The 18-year-old pleaded not guilty to five charges in the Alice Springs Magistrates Court on Tuesday - three of assault, one of criminal damage and one of lighting firecrackers.

He remains on bail ahead of a hearing scheduled to start on August 9, for which four days have been set aside.

Taylor, who did not play in last Thursday night's season-opener against Carlton at the MCG, has not been sanctioned by the Tigers, who plan to let the court proceedings run their course.

But the timing of the hearing means the case will be hanging over Taylor's head for almost the entire AFL season, with only three rounds to follow.

The charges relate to the alleged aggravated assault of three men at a New Year's Eve celebration in Alice Springs.

He has already told police when interviewed that he was acting in self-defence.

Melbourne solicitor Paul Horvath represented Taylor, who was also accompanied to court by a Tigers' player development manager.

Richmond's decision not to sanction Taylor differs from the stance taken by several other clubs with players facing court over criminal charges.

St Kilda sacked Andrew Lovett in February, a day after he was charged with rape.

Geelong's Mathew Stokes has been suspended until round eight of the AFL season, after he was charged with trafficking and possessing cocaine.

And Essendon's Michael Hurley, whose case relates most closely to Taylor's as he is also charged with assault, has been suspended by the Bombers until round four.

The Tigers believe there are mitigating circumstances in Taylor's case, which differentiate it from the others, although they have refused to give details while the case is before the court.

But the legal situation is expected to cost Taylor at least one potential AFL appearance.

His hearing is due to begin the morning after Richmond's round 19 clash with Melbourne at the MCG, meaning Taylor will be unable to play in that match and reach Alice Springs in time.

The Tigers said they would not be seeking any dispensation from the court to allow Taylor to play.

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