League: Police launch fraud investigation into Parramatta

The Eels look dejected after the round 11 NRL match against the Melbourne Storm. Photo / Getty
The Eels look dejected after the round 11 NRL match against the Melbourne Storm. Photo / Getty

Police have launched a formal investigation into allegations of fraud surrounding the salary cap dramas of NRL club Parramatta.

The NSW State Crime Command confirmed on Thursday evening they had launched the probe into the Eels, acting on a report given to them by the NRL integrity unit
"Following a review of the report, an investigation has commenced," a police spokesperson told AAP.

The move raises the possibility of fraud charges being laid in relation to the Eels alleged salary cap irregularities.

In announcing its preliminary findings into the saga last month, the NRL said Parramatta had been in breach of the salary cap to the tune of $3 million since 2013.

The NRL said more than 750,000 documents had been obtained as part of their investigation and report that was subsequently handed over to police.

Among the allegations relating to the salary cap rorts at the Eels, were claims of falsified invoices for services or goods that were never delivered.

Such allegations are expected to be among those investigated by police.

Earlier on Thursday, the five Parramatta officials at the centre of the salary cap scandal submitted their responses to NRL show-cause notices seeking their deregistration.

The fate of Eels chairman Steve Sharp, chief executive John Boulous, directors Tom Issa and Peter Serrao and football manager Daniel Anderson sits in the hands of the NRL integrity unit and CEO Todd Greenberg after lodging their individual responses to the governing body's claims.

The Parramatta club has until Friday to provide its separate submission over the alleged salary cap breaches.

A final determination is expected from the NRL within a fortnight.

On Tuesday the NSW Supreme Court upheld the NRL's provisional suspension of the so-called "Gang of Five" club officials.

The five had been asked to show why they shouldn't be deregistered for their part in the club's alleged systemic salary cap breaches.

The club has been threatened with the loss of 12 competition points, their 2016 Auckland Nines title and a fine of $1 million.

-AAP

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