Matt Lodge reaches agreement with victims
Brisbane Broncos prop Matt Lodge has reached an agreement with the victims of his assault in New York in 2015.
Lodge and Broncos CEO Paul White addressed the media on Wednesday, with Lodge confirming he has taken out a bank loan to pay the settlement.
"I can confirm that a mediation took place in New York on June 11, 2018, and an agreement was reached which resolved the matter," Lodge said.
"I am thankful for those impacted by what I did in 2015 that a resolution has been reached.
"I want to reiterate how sorry I am for what happened and how it has impacted them. I cannot disclose any of the details of the agreement as it is confidential.
"However I can say that I have repaid the agreed amount by myself.
"I wanted to reach a resolution that satisfied those affected by my actions.
"I want to say how sorry am for my actions. I think about what happened in New York every day and it drives me to be a better person, a better father and a better member of society. I know that I have to continue working hard to earn the respect of the entire community, and the NRL community.
"I've organised a loan and I will pay the full amount straight away and then I'll work hard to repay that loan."
White confirmed the Broncos would not be paying any part of the settlement, and would not give Lodge a new contract until the approval of the NRL.
"We are not in a position to assist Matt in any way with that, other than to keep assisting him along the way whether that's with his applications to the bank or whatever it is," White said.
"We'll assist in that area, but Matt has taken full responsibility for his actions and the payment of this entire compensation.
"Matt's taken extensive steps, he's been alcohol free for that entire period of time, he's done considerable rehabilitation programs overseen both by the courts and the NRL.
"Matt is in the middle of the season so it was really difficult for him to schedule time to travel to New York but an independent mediator was appointed who mediated between both parties."
White said the club was not able to offer Lodge a new contract for next season and beyond until getting the approval of the NRL.
"We're not in a position to do that until the NRL give Matt approval to do that. The NRL came out quite strongly and said they wanted the compensation issue resolved, or at least really strong attempts (made) to do so.
"The NRL will need to green light any attempt we make to upgrade Matt."