Byron Kelleher sentenced to six months in prison: the ex-rugby player is found guilty of domestic violence against the mother of his son

Byron Kelleher sentenced to six months in prison: the ex-rugby player is found guilty of domestic violence against the mother of his son

Byron Kelleher sentenced to six months in prison: the ex-rugby player is found guilty of domestic violence against the mother of his son

Violences conjugales : l’ex-rugbyman Byron Kelleher condamné par la justice à six mois de prison avec sursis. MAXPPP – THIERRY BORDAS

Insultes, coups au visage et dans le torse, a égrèné la présidente de la 24e chambre en exposant les faits. L’ancien rugbyman du Stade toulousain Byron Kelleher (47 ans) a nié en bloc.

Former New Zealand international and former Stade Toulousain player Byron Kelleher was sentenced Monday to 6 months in prison with a two-year probationary suspension by the Paris judicial court for domestic violence against his ex-partner.

"In our culture, women come before everyone else", defended herself, in English , the former scrum half, nicknamed "the buffalo" because of its power on the rugby field.

These words did not convince the court which declared Byron Kelleher, 47, guilty of the facts with which he was accused. He will also have to pay a fine of 1,000 euros and pay 800 euros to his ex-partner for moral damages.

Under the influence of alcohol?

In June 2023, under the influence of alcohol – what he disputes – the former All Blacks attacked his partner and mother of their son. Insults, blows to the face and chest, the president of the 24th chamber says while exposing the facts.

I drink like everyone else drinks

The complainant says that her companion dragged her into a corridor while pulling her hair. "I don't recognize the facts", replies Byron Kelleher. "That's not true", he insists. The former player also denies having a problem with alcohol. "I drink like everyone else drinks", he said. On the evening of the events, he admits to having simply "drank a few glasses of rosé wine" with a friend.

Her ex-partner explains that she had to take refuge in the bathroom then in the toilet to escape the blows. According to the ex-rugby player, it was his wife who attacked him. He only defended himself by grabbing her wrists.

A couple in difficulty from the start of their union, in 2010

"She broke my tooth", he complains. His ex-partner, who filed a complaint more than a month after the events, tells the stand that she "saw her die". "He scares me", she said.

My client wants above all to protect herself and her son

Other acts of violence, not upheld by the court, would have taken place, in particular during a stay of the couple on Mauritius or even in Monaco. My client "above all wants to protect herself and her son", argued the plaintiff’s lawyer, Me Thibaut Rouffiac.

The prosecutor considered the words of the ex-rugbyman "not coherent, not convincing and not relevant& quot;. For the lawyer of the ex-rugby player, Me Emmanuelle Jallifier-Verne, the complainant was "not always very nice" towards his client, "living rugby legend".

Madame loved beauty and luxury

According to the lawyer, their relationship was based on money. "Madame loved beauty, luxury", she said. The lawyer highlights "kindness" and "the mahori values" by Byron Kelleher. "Certainly, there was an argument, concedes the lawyer, but in no way was there violence".

The couple met in Toulouse in 2010. A son was born from their union in 2015 but the couple separated shortly after the birth of the child, already due, according to the complainant, "verbal and physical violence".

Repeat offender

Mr. Kelleher returned to New Zealand before returning to France in February 2022 and resuming life together with his partner. According to her, the violence resumed just one month after her return to France.

Byron Kelleher was in trouble with the law already in 2009 following a brawl that occurred in Toulouse after a collision while he was driving under the influence of ;rsquo;alcohol. He was also briefly placed in police custody in October 2013 for "drunk driving" in Bordeaux.

In 2017, he was sentenced to a fine of 200 euros for damage and domestic violence committed in 2016 with another woman.

Twice crowned French champion (2008, 2011) and once European champion (2010) with Stade Toulousain, he was also selected 57 times with the All Blacks between ;1999 and 2007.

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