Bulldogs claim Sonny Bill blackmail - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Bulldogs claim Sonny Bill blackmail

27/07/2007 07:15:36 PM Comments (0)

Bulldogs chief executive Malcolm Noad claims a photographer offered to sell the NRL club pictures of Sonny Bill Williams to keep them from being published - something that might be construed as blackmail.

Williams broke a Sydney photographer's camera in King's Cross last Saturday night after the snapper continued taking photos of the star footballer leaving Hugo's nightclub.

The 21-year-old Kiwi international offered to pay for a replacement camera, believed to be worth close to $15,000.

But Noad said he was later approached to purchase the photos to prevent them from being released to the media.

"On Wednesday evening the paparazzi photographer called up the club saying that photos of Sonny are for sale and if we didn't buy them he would sell them to the media," said Noad.

"We obviously weren't going to agree to his request.

"When we spoke with him the next morning he'd already sold them.

"I'm not a lawyer so I'm not sure if his actions could be considered as attempted blackmail or not, but many would perceive it to be."

Some pictures have surfaced on a website and do not show Williams to be intoxicated or overly aggressive.

Noad said the club would investigate their legal options in treating such matters and did not rule out contacting the police.

"It certainly makes us think about what his intentions were when he saw Sonny on Saturday night."

The camera incident is not the first off-field indiscretion for Williams this year.

He was previously caught on camera in a compromising position with ironwoman Candice Falzon in a hotel toilet cubicle and also fined for urinating in public.

Williams vowed to abstain from alcohol after the urinating incident.

Noad said the young Bulldogs star was clearly struggling to come to terms with his celebrity status.

"He is a young, polite guy who struggles with the fact that he is a star and he can't come to terms with that, but I think now he has got to come to terms with it," Noad told the Nine Network.

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