Toulon have decided to appeal the EPCR’s sanction over president Mourad Boudjellal’s controversial Morman comments.
He was given a €75,000 fine by the EPRC in July, with another €25,000 suspended and his were club threatened with a five-point deduction and ordered to pay costs over Boudjellal’s bizarre comments made in the wake of Mathieu Bastareaud’s punishment for allegedly using homophobic language. But Boudjellal is not appealing the fine, with the club pursuing matters over the points threat and having to pay the Independent Disciplinary Committee hearing costs.
France international Bastareaud was given a three-week ban after he was alleged to have directed a homophobic slur towards Benetton Treviso lock Sebastian Negri.
Between Bastareaud’s charge and punishment, Boudjellal gave an interview in which he expressed concern about the “Mormon side of the EPCR [European Professional Club Rugby] with the Welsh and Irish”.
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Boudjellal suggested that Bastareaud would be punished by people lacking in moral standards, prompting an investigation by the EPCR.
In a statement on Monday the EPRC said: RC Toulon have lodged an appeal against the decision of an independent Disciplinary Committee which, following a hearing last July, imposed a five-match points deduction on the club when competing in EPCR tournaments (suspended for three seasons), and also ordered the club to pay costs.
The independent Disciplinary Committee upheld a misconduct complaint against RC Toulon in that the club had overall responsibility for the actions of its President, Mourad Boudjellal, who had made comments which discriminated against and insulted a number of different groups and brought the game of rugby into disrepute.
The Disciplinary Committee also upheld a misconduct complaint against Mr Boudjellal imposing a fine of €75,000, with a further €25,000 suspended for three years, and also ordering him to pay EPCR’s costs. Mr Boudjellal has not appealed the decision.
The RC Toulon appeal will be heard in London tomorrow (Tuesday, 25 September) by an independent Appeal Committee consisting of Sir James Dingemans (England), Chairman, Philippe Cavalieros (France) and Andrea Caranci (Italy).
In other news: Todd Blackadder earns extended contract with Bath.
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