High-profile Australian rugby union player Kurtley Beale has strongly denied the allegations he sexually assaulted a woman in the toilets of a pub in Sydney’s eastern suburbs the week before Christmas last year.
Beale, who has played 95 tests and three World Cups for the Wallabies, was arrested as he left training with the NSW Waratahs last Friday, when Police stopped his car on Rainbow Street, Kingsford, around 2.30pm.
ABC News reports “Beale was taken into Waverley Police Station for questioning, for several hours before he was charged late Friday night.”
He was released by the Parramatta Bail Court on Saturday morning. The 34-year-old was ordered to surrender his passport, not contact witnesses, refrain from drinking alcohol and to report to police twice a week.
Outside court, Beale’s lawyer, Paul McGirr, told reporters Beale would be pleading not guilty and he strongly denied the allegations.
Nine News reports the Paramatta Bail Court heard that Beale was under surveillance when he allegedly “made admissions to the nature of the offending” in a phone call to the 28-year-old woman.
Barrister Steven Stanton argued the intercepted phone calls is an admission of infidelity, “no more no less”.
A set of police reports tendered in bail Court states the woman went into the male bathrooms after Beale entered. She reported the alleged incident the next day.
Beale faces four charges, including sexual intercourse without consent, inciting another to sexually touch without consent and two counts of sexually touching another person without consent.
The Australia international was supported in Court by his wife, Maddi, her father and his sisters.
Shortly after NSW Police revealed the charges against Beale, Rugby Australia announced his suspension from all forms of the game in a joint statement with the NSW Waratahs.
“Rugby Australia and the NSW Waratahs advise that Kurtley Beale has been suspended from all forms of Rugby with immediate effect pending the conclusion of legal proceedings, as well as Rugby Australia’s own investigations,” a statement issued on Friday night said.
“This step follows Mr Beale’s arrest and subsequent charge with serious criminal offences, and is in line with Rugby Australia’s professional player code of conduct. The Rugby Union Players Association (RUPA) has been informed of this development.
“As this remains a legal matter, there will be no further comment until the conclusion of these proceedings.”
The NSW Police also issued a statement on Friday. “A man has been arrested as part of an investigation into an alleged sexual assault in Sydney’s east last year..
“In December, officers from Tweed/Byron Police District received a report a 28-year-old woman was allegedly sexually assaulted at a licensed premise on Beach Road, Bondi Beach, on Saturday, December 17.
“Detectives from Eastern Suburbs Police Area Command took carriage of the matter and commenced an investigation under Strike Force Titheradge.
“Following inquiries, a 33-year-old man was arrested following a vehicle stop on Rainbow Street, Kingsford, just before 2.30 pm today. He has been taken to Waverley Police Station. Inquiries continue.”
Beale recently returned to Australia ahead of the Super Rugby season for the NSW Waratahs after several years playing in France.
Beale, who is from NSW, has spent most of his more than decade-long career with the Waratahs, aside from a brief spell with the Melbourne Rebels.
He is due back in court in March.