NRL rejects prop Russell Packer's registration
The NRL has refused to register the contract of Newcastle recruit Russell Packer in the wake of a late-night incident that led to the prop facing assault charges.
The 24-year-old former Warriors forward was charged with assault occasioning actual bodily harm and failure to leave a licensed premises last week over an alleged incident in Sydney's Martin Place.
Packer was granted conditional bail and will appear in court on January 6.
In October, Packer was released from the final year of his contract to join the Knights on a four-year deal.
In making the decision to knock back Packer's registration, NRL chief operating officer Jim Doyle said his organisation had found enough evidence of behavioural breaches.
''We will always respect the court process and, if the only facts in question are those before the court, then clearly we will ordinarily wait for them to be resolved,'' Doyle said in a statement.
''We have also been clear that we will always act on any information that demonstrates behaviour which is contrary to the interests, welfare and image of the NRL.
''While we make no inference in relation to the charges that Russell is facing, our Integrity Unit has reported conduct that leaves us with little choice other than to refuse the application for registration.''
Packer made his NRL debut with the Warriors in 2008 and went on to play 110 games for the Auckland-based club.