Richard Tutaki denied bail

IMOGEN NEALE
Last updated 12:46 17/01/2012
Sonny Bill Williams and Richard Tutaki
PETER DRURY/Fairfax NZ

CANCELLED: Sonny Bill Williams and Richard Tutaki were set to fight in Hamilton on February 8.

Sonny Bill Williams sparring session
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Sonny Bill Williams works the big bag during a sparring session

SBW fighting for the heavyweight title

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The boxer who had been due to fight Sonny Bill Williams for the New Zealand heavyweight title has been denied bail at his latest court appearance today.

Richard Tutaki, 33, had been scheduled to fight the All Black star on February 8. But revelations Tutaki had been arrested and was in jail for failing to appear in court last week to face more than 10 charges - including possession of methamphetamine - scuppered those plans.

The charges against Tutaki include possession of methamphetamine and drug utensils, breach of bail, three counts of receiving stolen property, unlawfully getting into a motor vehicle, dangerous driving, failing to stop for police, failing to remain stopped and giving false details to police.

He appeared in the Auckland District Court today seeking bail but was remanded in custody until tomorrow when his bail application will be reconsidered.

Tutaki was arrested after failing to appear at a court appearance on January 10, but the court was told today he believed his next appearance was January 19 and he would have appeared at the earlier time if he'd known about it.

He had no desire to jeopardise his fight with Williams.

Community magistrate Jan Holmes has asked for a transpcript of a December 22 court appearance to determine if the January 19 date was set then.

Police had opposed bail.

Williams will now fight giant Auckland resident and American-born heavyweight Clarence Tillman III, who boasts 11 wins, eight losses and two draws to his name.

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