Mickael Bert, the Dax lock (No 4), has received a three week suspension
Mickael Bert, the Dax lock (No 4), appeared before an independent Disciplinary Committee in Dublin today (Thursday, 22 January), as a result of a citing arising from the Round 4 European Challenge Cup Pool 1 match against London Irish at the Madejski Stadium on Thursday, 11 December, 2008.
The citing lodged by the Citing Commissioner for the match, Geraint Edwards (Wales) was for an alleged strike on London Irish player James Buckland (No 2) in contravention of Law 10.4 (a).
The independent Disciplinary Committee, chaired by Rod McKenzie (Scotland) and also comprising Robert Williams (Wales) and George Spotswood (Ireland), found that Mickael Bert was guilty of foul play in that he did strike James Buckland in contravention of Law 10.4 (a).
After considering the evidence available, the independent Disciplinary Committee determined that the offence was of the mid-range of the level of seriousness for punching.
Having taken into account any mitigating and aggravating factors the independent Disciplinary Committee suspended the player for a period of three (3) weeks up to and including Wednesday, 11 February, 2009.
The hearing was originally scheduled for Thursday, 18 December, 2008, but Bert requested and was granted an adjournment.
Both parties have the right to appeal.
NOTES TO EDITORS:
(i) Citing Commissioner
a) Citing Commissioners will be appointed by ERC for all Heineken Cup and all televised European Challenge Cup matches and shall be entitled to cite a Player for any act or acts of Foul Play that in the Citing Commissioner's opinion warranted a citing.
b) For such matches Clubs will not have the power to cite a player but may refer incidents to the Citing Commissioner within 24 hours of the conclusion of the match.
c) The Citing Commissioner will have 50 hours from the start of the game to make a citing and the determination of the Citing Commissioner will be final and binding. In exceptional circumstances this deadline can be extended.
d) Should the Citing Commissioner decide there is a case to answer he will notify the Disciplinary Officer and the Disciplinary Officer will then bring a charge against the cited player.
e) This case will then proceed to a disciplinary hearing.
(ii) Independent Disciplinary Committee
a) Citings will be heard by an independent Disciplinary Committee as soon as is practicable. Until the hearing a cited player is eligible to play in ERC tournaments
b) The independent Disciplinary Committee is chosen by the Chairman of the independent Disciplinary Panel, Professor Lorne Crerar.
c) The ERC Disciplinary Officer, Roger O'Connor, presents the case against the player
d) Both parties to the hearing (ERC and the player) have the right to appeal decisions of the independent Disciplinary Committee. Appeals must be lodged within 72 hours of receiving the full written decision from the Chairman of the independent Disciplinary Committee
e) The full written decision of the independent Disciplinary Committee will be available on www.ercrugby.com/disciplinenews when the disciplinary process is complete
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