Unlike many All Black stars in New Zealand, Mils Muliaina wasn’t given name suppression when he was charged with sexual assault, neither was his name suppressed when he appeared in court. But then, they do things slightly differently outside of New Zealand. In the UK the name of the victim of an alleged sex assault is suppressed, not the accused.
Muliaina is charged with the sexual assault of a 19 year old woman. The alleged assault took place in Cardiff, on a ‘night out’ after the Irish club side he was playing for lost 18-17 to the Cardiff Blues. Police later arrested the former All Black at his team’s European Challenges quarter-final defeat in April. TV cameras filmed him being led away to a police van
In New Zealand there’s an old saying: there’s a spike in domestic violence when the All Blacks lose a match. Fortunately for many New Zealand families, the All Blacks don’t lose very often.
Ironically, winger Julian Savea (former winger for the Hurricanes) used to be the poster boy for a NZ government led campaign for the Te Rito Wellington Family Violence Network against family violence, part of New Zealand’s “It’s Not Ok” campaign.
That was until Savea was charged with assaulting his partner Dawn Rogers. The charge was later withdrawn by a Wellington Court after Savea “completed a police diversion.”
Diversion is offered in New Zealand as a way of preventing re-offending, it also helps people to not score a conviction against their name and leaves them free to travel abroad for work. Is that ok? and does it reflect how seriously New Zealand views family violence? perhaps.
You may recall another All Black, Zac Guildford was stood down by the Crusaders after his his third alcohol fuelled incident in 15 months.
But many top level sports personalities have been afforded name suppression in New Zealand after being convicted for assaults against minors, or for sex crimes, and discharged without conviction. This means they’re able to continue their careers outside of New Zealand because they do not have a criminal record.
The website NZ Rugby Bad Boys has collated a very long list of former All Black stars and their criminal convictions, you can find it here LINK.
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New Zealand’s criminal justice system has again attracted ridicule after the Queenstown newspaper Mountain Scene released details of a ‘cover up’ that protected the identity of a sex offender then released him without conviction, presumably because he was a “prominent” member of the community.
Here’s what Rodney Hide wrote about the matter, in an article headed