Nixon wants more time to answer misconduct claims
Ricky Nixon RICKY Nixon wants a deadline extension to answer misconduct claims while he continues rehabilitation for a substance abuse problem.
Nixon’s lawyer Rod Lamplugh said the AFL players association’s agent accreditation board was moving with unnecessary urgency to judge the high-profile manager.
The board on Thursday provisionally suspended Nixon, after finding a prima f acie case t hat he acted dishonestly, unprofessionally and without integrity.
They gave him seven days to respond before handing down a final verdict.
That would make decision day March 25, the date of the AFL season- opener between Richmond and Carlton.
But Lamplugh said that was too rushed, given Nixon last week admitted himself to a rehabilitation clinic and stepped down indefinitely from player management.
‘‘ They know he’s in recovery, in rehabilitation,’’ Lamplugh said yesterday.
‘‘ If there was some urgent need to make a decision on his accreditation, let’s say he was doing something wrong right now, there might be some urgency.
‘‘ But as I understand it, they say he did something wrong in the past.
‘‘ Why couldn’t they allow him time to recover?’’
Lamplugh said he wanted an extra week and was writing to the board to ask for an extension.
However, board chairman I an Prendergast said he believed the March 25 deadline allowed sufficient time.
Prendergast said the fact that Nixon was in rehabilitation had not stopped him communicating through his lawyers during the investigation.
He said it was important the case was resolved quickly, as Nixon’s clients were in a state of limbo.
However, Lamplugh said those players could still negotiate new contracts, through Nixon’s company Flying Start’s other accredited agent, Winston Rous.
Prendergast also defended the decision not to hand down a verdict on Thursday, saying if they had it might have been overturned in court.
‘‘ He needs to be given that opportunity, otherwise we risk making a decision that could effectively be undone if it was challenged on procedural grounds,’’ he told radio 3AW.
Prendergast refused to detail what Nixon was found to have done that led the board to the view he had not met the standard of conduct needed to keep his accreditation. Nixon has admitted to acting inappropriately with teenager Kim Duthie, but has denied her claims that they had a sexual relationship or that he used drugs in her presence.