Former Lions coach cleared of indecent assault
Cape Town - Former Lions defence coach Joey Mongalo has been acquitted on a charge of sexually assaulting an Australian woman.
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The woman was an employee of a Sydney hotel where the Lions stayed during their Super Rugby tour of Australia in 2018.
Mongalo was convicted by a local Sydney court earlier this year and fined A$2 000 (R20 000), but decided to appeal the finding.
On Friday, the New South Wales District Court set aside Mongalo’s earlier conviction.
Mongalo told Rapport newspaper that the matter was now settled and he could return home to rebuild his life.
‘I said from the beginning that I did not commit an offence,’ he added.
‘In the same breath, to be involved in something like this, runs counter to the values ??I aspire to live every day.’
According to the Rugby Rocks website, Mongalo’s contract with the Lions was not renewed in October this year when the Johannesburg franchise confirmed Ivan van Rooyen as their new Super Rugby coach.
Mongalo was a prominent junior player and represented the Blue Bulls age group teams, playing mainly as a flyhalf.
He went on to play senior rugby for the Bulls, but was never able to cement a spot at the top level.
The Lions will open their 2020 Super Rugby campaign with a tough away clash against the Jaguares in Argentina on Saturday, February 1.