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Rugby league: Samoa’s Luciano Leilua banned from World Cup over alleged domestic violence

Luciano Leilua is the younger brother of former NRL star Joseph Leilua. Photo / Photosport

North Queensland Cowboys forward Luciano Leilua has been stood down under the NRL’s No-Fault policy after he was charged over an alleged domestic violence incident.

On Thursday afternoon, the NRL confirmed that NSW Police had charged Leilua with common assault (domestic violence related) and intentionally or recklessly destroy / damage property (domestic violence related) following an alleged incident earlier this week.

The 26-year-old has subsequently been banned from participating in the upcoming Rugby League World Cup, where he was set to represent Samoa.

“The NRL has advised the North Queensland Cowboys that Luciano Leilua is subject to a No-Fault Stand Down condition under the NRL Rules,” the league said in a statement.

“The decision should in no way be interpreted as a view on the innocence or guilt of the player.

“The discretionary No-Fault Stand Down condition has been applied in this instance as the criminal charges involve allegations that the player has acted violently in relation to a female.

“Under the condition, the player is not permitted to participate as a player in the NRL competition or any representative competitions. The No-Fault Stand Down condition is recognized by the Rugby League World Cup.”

The Cowboys confirmed that Leilua had been stood down from all club duties.

“The NRL have today invoked their no-fault stand down policy for North Queensland Cowboys player Luciano Leilua,” the club said in a statement.

“The Cowboys will continue to provide support to all parties involved and will await the completion of the court process before making any further comment.”

A NSW Police spokesperson confirmed that on Monday, officers went to the home in Harrington Park, NSW and arrested Leilua.

He was taken to Camden police station where charges were laid.

Leilua is due to face Campbelltown Local Court on Tuesday, October 11.

The Rugby League World Cup, postponed 12 months due to the Covid-19 pandemic, will get underway in England on October 15.

DO YOU NEED HELP?

If you’re in danger now:

• Phone the police on 111 or ask neighbors of friends to ring for you.
• Run outside and head for where there are other people.
• Scream for help so that your neighbors can hear you.
• Take the children with you.
• Don’t stop to get anything else.
• If you are being abused, remember it’s not your fault. Violence is never okay

Where to go for help or more information:

• Shine, free national helpline 9 am-11pm every day – 0508 744 633 www.2shine.org.nz
• Women’s Refuge: Free national crisis line operates 24/7 – 0800 refuge or 0800 733 843 www.womensrefuge.org.nz
• Shakti: Providing specialist cultural services for African, Asian and middle eastern women and their children. Crisis line 24/7 0800 742 584
• It’s Not Ok: Information line 0800 456 450 www.areyouok.org.nz
• For men who feel they’re going to harm a loved one call 0800 HEY BRO or 0800 439 276

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