Ben Cousins charged with drug possession - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Ben Cousins charged with drug possession

By Nick Perpitch and Andrea Hayward 16/10/2007 09:12:17 PM Comments (0)

Troubled AFL star Ben Cousins' footballing future is in grave doubt after he was charged with possessing a prohibited drug - six months after leaving rehab.

The 29-year-old West Coast Eagles midfielder was also charged with one count of failing to comply with a requirement to undergo a driver assessment.

He will appear in court on Thursday.

Earlier this year, Cousins, the former Eagles skipper, flew to California for expensive drug rehabilitation, returning to play for the club after apologising for his conduct.

Cousins has never tested positive for illicit drugs.

His return to the club was on condition he agree to a zero tolerance clause to testing positive to banned substances, stay away from underworld figures and not fall foul of the law.

Perth radio station 6PR said the West Coast board was meeting to discuss Cousins' future.

Cousins' former teammate Daniel Chick was arrested separately.

The club put out a brief statement after the charges were announced.

"The West Coast Eagles wish to advise that the club is not in a position to make any statement regarding Ben Cousins and Daniel Chick being questioned by police," the statement said.

"The police have advised the club that they will detail the circumstances of the interviews at the appropriate time and until then no club official will be available to the media."

Cousins walked out of major crime headquarters at Curtin House through a rear exit at 6.15pm (WST), just minutes after police issued a statement announcing the charges. He made no comment to waiting media.

Just before 7.00pm (WST), he was driven away from the East Perth lockup by his father in a gold Pajero after being bailed.

In the statement, police said they stopped Cousins' vehicle on Newcastle St, Perth around 11.30am (WST) after he came to their attention "due to the manner of his driving".

They allegedly found a quantity of prohibited drugs after searching the four-wheel drive vehicle. It was not specified what drug it was.

The Brownlow medallist, once described as the spiritual leader of the Eagles, was stopped by police in Perth's nightclub district and spent two hours in the back of his car as police searched his four-wheel drive.

"Police conducted a full, thorough search of that vehicle, as well as videotaping the entire proceedings," Nine Network reporter Grant Taylor told Macquarie Radio.

"Cousins was forced to sit in the back of his car the entire time before finally he was led away..."

A shirtless Cousins, with his "Such Is Life" torso tattoo exposed, was then taken to East Perth traffic office before being driven to Curtin House.

There he was visited by former girlfriend Samantha Druce, father and manager Bryan Cousins, and his lawyer Peter Momber.

Cousins was with Eagles legend Chris Mainwaring on the same day he died earlier this month, and whose death is now being investigated by the major crime squad.

Mainwaring played a crucial role in getting Cousins into drug rehabilitation for a month in April.

Cousins passed a voluntary drug test in the hours after Mainwaring's death.

Named as the 1996 AFL Rising Star, Cousins has been no stranger to trouble since 2002 when he was linked to Perth underground figure and convicted drug trafficker John Kizon.

He and teammate Michael Gardiner were cleared by the Eagles of allegedly ordering cocaine.

In February last year, Cousins stranded then girlfriend Druce in his car when he bolted from a booze bus and was forced to quit the Eagles captaincy, admitting to "errors of judgment"."

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