Official Release: NRL responds to Deloitte report

The National Rugby League has described the extent of Salary Cap breaches uncovered at the Melbourne Storm as simply extraordinary.<br><br>The NRL Salary Cap auditors will seek to review the findings into the Deloitte report before working with Melbourne to address the 2011 Salary Cap.<br><br>In response to the report which suggests breaches to the order of $3.17m over five years, NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, said:<br><br>“The disclosures by the Storm’s owner this morning were damning in the extreme.<br><br>“It’s time for everyone to face the facts and focus on the club’s future.<br><br>“Fact one - Melbourne Storm systematically breached the Salary Cap and they are well and truly over it today.<br><br>“Fact two - The NRL issued its penalties on the basis of breaches that the club and Dr Moodie openly admitted to. Dr Moodie, on behalf of his board, publicly accepted the penalties imposed.<br><br>“Fact three – The fact that the breaches go beyond even those admissions is an indictment on the directors who were overseeing the club and a chairman who signed statutory declarations that the club was complying with the Salary Cap.<br><br>“Fact four - The true victims of the cheating are not only Storm fans and the innocent parties at the club, but the other fifteen clubs and their fans who lost the chance to compete fairly for players.<br><br>“Fact five - There is a future for Melbourne Storm and we are keen to work with the club’s new management to do all that can be done within the rules to make it a successful one. <br><br>“We remain 100% convinced that the penalties imposed were appropriate.<br><br>“Undoing years of Salary Cap cheating at the club is a complicated issue and not one that can be solved by just taking pay cuts.<br><br>“Clubs can’t be allowed to take players out of the market with huge offers one year and then cover things up with pay cuts the next.<br><br>“There are provisions for contracts to be renegotiated and for terms to be extended but that is a complicated process and requires total transparency.<br><br>“We want to get on with that process and hopefully we will be in a position to do so now.<br><br>“Clearly we would expect that the court case will be discontinued. The club’s owner does not wish for it to continue and, in any event, it has always been our belief that the court action is without any merit.<br><br>“Finally let me address some of the nonsense emanating from Dr Moodie and his team in recent days.<br><br>“To say that they are the only ones interested in the Storm’s future and of putting the ‘N’ in the NRL is PR driven rubbish designed to smother the facts.<br><br>“Their back-flip on their acceptance of the penalties has caused great damage and slowed down the club’s progress towards successfully getting back on track.”<br>