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Ex All-Black Kelleher found guilty of domestic violence

By AFP

May 7, 2024 12:13 AM


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Byron Kelleher, a former All Black and Toulouse halfback, was found guilty of domestic violence by a Paris court on Monday.

Kelleher received a suspended six-month prison sentence for domestic violence against his ex-girlfriend when he returned to France to see their son.

Kelleher, 47, must also pay a fine of 1,000 euros as well as 800 euros in compensation to his ex-girlfriend.

The court found that in June, 2023, under the influence of alcohol, Kelleher  attacked the  mother of their son and hit her in the face and body. The ex-girlfriend told the court that Kelleher  dragged her down a corridor, pulling her hair.

"I don't recognise the facts," said Kelleher. "It's not true."

He also denied that he was drunk and said he does not have "a problem with alcohol".

"I drink like everyone else drinks," he said. On the night of the crime, he said he had "had a few glasses of rose" with a friend.

He said his wife attacked him and he only defended himself by grabbing her wrists.

"She broke my tooth," he said.

The ex-girlfriend, who filed a complaint more than a month after the incident, said that she "saw herself dying".

"He scares me," she said.

Kelleher, who won 57 New Zealand caps, spent four seasons playing for Toulouse in France. He was famed for his physical style, often preferring to run rather than pass.

Kelleher had already had a run-in with the police in 2009 following a brawl in Toulouse after a collision while driving under the influence of alcohol.

He was also briefly taken into police custody in October 2013 for "drunk driving" in Bordeaux.

In 2017, he was fined 200 euros for damage and domestic violence committed in 2016 with another woman.


AFP


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