The Parramatta Eels have been banned from playing at the National Rugby League after solid evidence of salary fraud for players was found.
Under the Undisclosed Payment Register document, the file that NRL found contained 25 names of previous and current players. These players are alleged to have been paid by businesses and individuals on top of their salaries. The document is said to cover transactions from 2014 up to 2018.
With this damning document, along with recordings of Parramatta Eels board meetings, the NRL has since banned the team from playing and put them up with a $1 million fine.
While Fox Sports opted to redact the names of the implicated players, The Daily Telegraph listed recent NFL retiree Jarryd Hayne and retired Anthony Watmough among the players who allegedly received third-party payments.
Jarryd Hayne has been out of the NRL team since March 2014 when he switched to the NFL. He recently announced his retirement from the NFL to secure his place at the Fiji Olympic team for rugby.
After the news broke, the media caught up with the Olympic hopeful in London.
“Half a million? Wow, must have been the wrong bank account. I haven’t seen it,” said Hayne to Fox Sports. Hayne further expressed disappointment at his former team’s suspension. He previously declared that he still considers going back to his only rugby team after his Olympic stint.
Last May 3, the NRL issued a Breach Notice to the team. The recordings show the five top executives of the Parramatta Eels, board members Tanya Gadiel and Andrew Cordwell. Former CEO Scott Seward and suspended CEO John Boulous have been identified as the masterminds of the dodgy deals.
The top executives have since cried foul at the incriminating reports, saying they are being cheated of ‘due process’.