DAN MULLAN/GETTY IMAGES
Wallabies and Queensland Reds player Karmichael Hunt is “inconsolable” after being charged with drug possession by Queensland police, according to his lawyer.
The 31-year-old Queensland Reds star was arrested and charged with two counts of drug possession and issued with a notice to appear in the Brisbane Magistrates Court on January 29.
Hunt’s solicitor, Adam Magill, told Fairfax Media he had spoken to his client since the arrest and charges in Brisbane.
CHRIS HYDE/GETTY IMAGES
“He is very upset, as anyone would expect, and pretty much inconsolable,” Mr Magill said.
* Hunt suspended and fined
* Hunt won’t live down drugs bust
* Wallabies opt away from Hunt
* Kerevi sees off Hunt challenge
“He is sticking with his family. He’s got concerns and his manager is taking care of him.”
Hunt and another man were walking along McLachlan Street in Fortitude Valley about 12.40am on Saturday when they were approached by officers during what a police spokesman described as “a random street stop”.
Mr Magill said police will allege officers found a bag of white powder on the ground between the two men, which it will be alleged was cocaine.
A 32-year-old man, who was with Hunt at the time, was also arrested and later charged with possessing an item used in a drug offence.
It’s not the first time Hunt has been in trouble for drug offences – he was fined in March 2015 after pleading guilty to four counts of possessing cocaine.
The former NRL and AFL player was one of several professional footballers to be caught up in a Queensland Crime and Corruption Commission investigation into a cocaine trafficking ring operating in the state’s south-east.
The investigation also led to several Gold Coast Titans players being charged for drug offences.
At the time, Hunt said he had made a “terrible mistake” and apologised for the distress he had caused to his family and friends.
The Australian Rugby Union (now Rugby Australia) fined Hunt $30,000 and suspended him for six weeks following the 2015 incident.
Hunt has shaken off the controversy to establish himself at the Reds, making his Wallabies debut this year and signing a two-year contract extension until 2019 with Rugby Australia in November.
“Rugby Australia has today been made aware of an incident involving Wallabies and Reds back Karmichael Hunt in Brisbane overnight,” the governing body said in a statement.
“Rugby Australia takes all matters relating to the off-field behaviour of its players seriously and has commenced an investigation into the incident in conjunction with the Queensland Rugby Union.”
Hunt’s professional sporting career has taken his across a number of codes, beginning in 2004, when he earned his NRL debut for the Brisbane Broncos – the youngest Bronco to do so as a 17-year-old.
Two years later he won an NRL premiership with the side, while being recognised at representative level with debuts for Queensland in State of Origin and Australia, winning the Tri-Nations title.
In 2008, Hunt became the youngest player in premiership history to play 100 first grade rugby league games. In September that year, Hunt and Broncos teammates Darius Boyd and Sam Thaiday were accused of sexual assault but police cleared them of the allegations in November.
The following year Hunt signed a deal reportedly worth more than $3 million to switch codes and joined the newly formed Gold Coast expansion AFL club. He played a six-month stint of professional rugby union in France before commencing his AFL contract.
After managing just 10 games in his final two seasons with the Suns, and after quiet years until that point, Hunt announced in 2014 he was leaving the sport to switch to rugby union, signing with the Reds.
He was appointed vice-captain of the Reds along with Rob Simmons in January 2015, but shortly thereafter faced a Gold Coast court where he pleaded guilty to four counts of possessing cocaine.