Auto Poster Rabbitohs give update to claims of lewd video chat

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Apr 23, 2013
Rabbitohs give update to claims of lewd video chat

Last updated 21:40, September 14 2018

A Rabbitohs fan shows his support in Cairns.

The Rabbitohs released an update on Friday night on their investigation into claims that high profile players at the club were involved in a lewd sexting incident that left a woman feeling violated and disgusted.

Sydney's Daily Telegraph reported on Friday that several high-profile Rabbitohs exposed themselves during a FaceTime video chat as they celebrated a win over the Warriors.

The NRL club is investigating an email from a 23-year-old sent the day after the May 26 incident.

She said a "funny" FaceTime chat "with the group of boys" turned explicit and left her "violated and disgusted", the Daily Telegraph said.

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Screenshots taken by the woman purport to show one of the players displaying his genitals, while another bares his backside.

She has said phone records show one player repeatedly called her, even after she had made it clear she wanted to be left alone.

After an initial response from the club, she claims further correspondence was ignored for more than three months.

Not surprisingly, it has been the biggest sporting story in Australia, the day before the Rabbitohs have their NRL playoff game against the Dragons and their coach Anthony Seibold appeared uncomfortable when speaking the media during the day.

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After spending the day investigating what happened, the club released a statement late on Friday, explaining why they weren't able to follow up on the complaint.

"The Club's general enquiry email address received emails from an anonymous email address on 27 and 31 May 2018 about alleged lewd behaviour by a player over social media," the statement said.

"The emails did not identify the player allegedly involved, nor did they identify the person making the complaint.

"On 1 June, the Club replied through Football Operations and Player Wellbeing Manager Brock Schaefer confirming it would investigate the complaint, requesting further information regarding the alleged incident and asking for contact details for the person making the complaint.

"The Daily Telegraph contacted the Club on the afternoon of Thursday, 13 September stating the Club had failed to respond to emails dated 5 June and 31 August regarding alleged lewd player behaviour.

"Upon receipt of the information from The Daily Telegraph, the Club engaged an independent contractor to conduct an email system audit regarding the emails sent to Mr Schaefer on 5 June and 31 August.

"These emails, sent again from an anonymous address, were tagged as spam due to the sender's unique email address. As per the Club's junk email filter, these emails were subsequently routed to a junk mail folder and were not received or seen by Mr Schaefer.

"Upon discovery and review of the emails on 13 September, the Club attempted to contact the complainant via an international phone number provided in these emails, but it was no longer in service.

"Again, the emails did not identify the player allegedly involved, nor did they identify the person making the complaint. "The Club contacted the person making the complaint again by email on 14 September 2018 and was provided with updated contact details by her.

"Rabbitohs CEO Blake Solly has had a discussion with the person making the complaint this afternoon. Mr Solly gave her a commitment that the Club would undertake its investigation of the complaint with the utmost confidentiality and respect.

"The Club will deal with the complaint thoroughly and will move as quickly as it possibly can to conclude the investigation."

The Rabbitohs stated they have appointed a panel of Commissioner Lea Drake (Independent), Karyn Murphy (NRL Integrity Unit) Nick Pappas (Rabbitohs Chairman), Emily Grant (Rabbitohs Head of Operations, People and Culture) and Mr Solly to investigate the complaint.

The above investigation will be undertaken in conjunction and co-operation with the NRL Integrity Unit. The club have confirmed the findings of the investigation will be thorough and transparent.

- Stuff

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