Rugby League-Burgess found guilty of intimidating former wife's father

FILE PHOTO: Britain Rugby League - England Training - Eltham College, London - 9/11/16 England's Sam Burgess during training Mandatory Credit: Action Images / John Sibley Livepic

(Reuters) - An Australian magistrate on Friday found former England rugby international Sam Burgess guilty of intimidating his former wife's father.

Burgess, who represented England in rugby league, and in rugby union at the 2015 World Cup, was sentenced at Moss Vale Local Court in New South Wales to a two-year community corrections order.

The 32-year-old told reporters later that he was confused with the decision, and his legal team was appealing against it.

Burgess became estranged from his wife, Phoebe, in 2019. Police charged him with intimidation after he visited the home of her father, Mitchell Hooke, in October that year.

Burgess retired from Australia's National Rugby League (NRL) in 2019 after playing 270 rugby league matches with South Sydney and Bradford Bulls. He also played for rugby union club Bath.

Burgess stepped down from his coaching role at South Sydney and his television job with Fox League, a rugby league channel, in October after the NRL said it would investigate allegations of drug abuse and domestic violence.

At that time, Burgess's lawyer, Mark O'Brien, rejected all of the allegations.

(Reporting by Shrivathsa Sridhar in Bengaluru; Editing by Robert Birsel)

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