Ben Barba under investigation for allegedly assaulting his partner


Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
The real reason Ben Barba is leaving the Bulldogs and heading north to the Broncos


Ben Barba and (inset) the photo the woman sent to her friend. Source: The Sunday Telegraph

BEN Barba is starting a new life in Brisbane after his relationship with the Bulldogs soured over an allegation he punched a woman in the face.

The star fullback is on the outer with some players and officials after the woman complained to the Bulldogs in February she had been punched by Barba in an argument over another man.

This was the incident that saw Barba spend two weeks in a rehabilitation centre and miss the first three rounds of the 2013 NRL season.

Some Bulldogs officials are so concerned about the situation they revealed details to The Sunday Telegraph, including the claim Barba failed to complete the counselling ordered by the Bulldogs.

A statement from the club on Sunday morning in response to this story said: "The Bulldogs have requested the NRL Integrity Unit investigate allegations raised in today's media in relation to Ben Barba."The Club will offer comment once those investigations are complete."

Barba, 24, was stood down by Bulldogs officials on February 25 after the woman approached former Bulldogs chief executive Todd Greenberg and coach Des Hasler at Belmore Sports Ground and claimed she had been hit in the face by Barba on the morning of February 24.

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:) (:
Wonder if Brisbane are aware of this?
They are a fairly professional club as opposed to say, oh I don't know, Canberra.

It was fairly obvious there was more then a gambling issue.


Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
Brisbane Broncos will stand by prized recruit Ben Barba in wake of assault allegations

THE Broncos will stand by Ben Barba and honour a $1 million deal as allegations of assaulting his ex-partner push the Brisbane recruit to "breaking point".

Just days after securing Barba to a three-year deal, the Broncos were forced to confront explosive claims the Bulldogs star may have punched Ainslee Currie, the mother of their two young daughters.

There were fears the Barba fallout could have repercussions on his new deal with Brisbane, but the Broncos are ready to help the 24-year-old with any personal issues.

Broncos boss Paul White declined to comment on Sunday night.

But it is understood the club was not aware of specific assault allegations during talks with Canterbury over Barba’s release, with Brisbane only alerted to his need for professional help.

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NRL integrity unit to launch independent review into allegations Ben Barba hit girlfriend Ainslie Currie


Ben Barba and (inset) the photo Currie sent to her friend. Source: The Sunday Telegraph

THE NRL integrity unit will launch an urgent and independent review into shocking allegations that star fullback Ben Barba hit his girlfriend, Ainslie Currie.

A photograph of Currie with a bleeding mouth — published in yesterday’s The Sunday Telegraph — was described as “deeply disturbing’’ by the NRL.
Barba was stood down by the Bulldogs in February after allegedly striking Currie in the face.

The pair are now back together and Barba is leaving Canterbury for Brisbane, where Currie is living with their two young children.

Following the initial complaint, Currie has constantly and strenuously denied ever being assaulted by Barba.Barba spent two weeks in a northern beaches rehabilitation centre after the alleged incident and missed the opening three matches of the season.

It is understood former Bulldogs CEO and current NRL head of football, Todd Greenberg, will play no part in the review.

An NRL media statement read: “Any suggestion of violence against women is abhorrent and has no place in rugby league.

“At no stage has the NRL previously seen the image published, nor has it been aware of any injuries suffered as a result of physical abuse.

“Ben’s partner Ainslie Currie has consistently denied any media suggestion of physical abuse and continues to do so.’’

Canterbury issued a brief statement about the drama yesterday morning.

It read: “The Bulldogs have requested the NRL integrity unit investigate allegations raised in (yesterday’s) media in relation to Ben Barba. “The club will offer comment once those investigations are complete.’’

NRL chief operating officer Jim Doyle yesterday revealed why his organisation would conduct its review.

“We are not, and have never been, aware of a complaint in relation to Ben Barba,’’ Doyle said.“It is appropriate that an immediate review is conducted into the circumstances and that is already in train.

“It is important in the meantime to consider that we are also talking about the lives of individuals and we must also remain highly alert to the physical and mental wellbeing of all concerned.

“We want to ensure that every possible step is being taken for the safety of all parties.’’

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Ben Barba issue hits at NRL integrity

THE Bulldogs have put a hard spin on their version of events.

It would take a gullible person to believe them at their word now after allegations that finally surfaced on Sunday that Ben Barba was stood down for splitting the lip of partner Ainslie Curry, which she denies.

At the press conference to announce Barba’s original suspension in February, then Canterbury chief executive Todd Greenberg denied point blank a question on rumours regarding domestic violence.

He emphasised his denial by saying there was no cause for police involvement. As it turned out, Curry herself insisted that police were not to be involved. "This is not a police matter," Greenberg said.

"This is a matter the club is dealing with under the club’s code of conduct."

Put down February 25 as the day the truth was stretched.

That the Bulldogs as a club failed to have the validity of the woman’s claims tested by a proper investigation because, as claimed on Sunday, Greenberg and coach Des Hasler "encouraged" the woman to inform police, but they say she wanted to inform only the club and Barba’s management, the club’s integrity is seriously undermined.

Every claim, every statement, by the Dogs now has to be thoroughly tested.Barba’s partner Ainslie Curry denied she was assaulted in a statement through her lawyers after The Sunday Telegraph approached the Bulldogs about an alleged assault involving Barba.

No explanation has been given for how her lip was split.If the assault occurred as it was originally claimed she told the Bulldogs, it is covered not only under the club’s code of conduct but possibly under common law and potentially criminal law.

Indeed, if the Bulldogs knew of the claim, which their denials confirm they did, and saw physical damage then they should have reported it to police. It would be a hard case to show if police did proceed, making them wary to do so, but it is covered under law.

Was it a cover-up, or an incompetent investigation?

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Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
Ainslie Currie's texts to a friend detail injuries after allegedly being punched by Ben Barba


Ainslie Currie with Ben Barba at the 2012 Dally Ms. Source: DailyTelegraph

THESE are some of the text messages Ainslie Currie sent to a friend after fronting the Bulldogs and alleging her former partner Ben Barba punched her in the face.

As the NRL continues its investigation into claims the star fullback was the subject of a domestic violence complaint, The Daily Telegraph can reveal a partial transcript of the explosive text messages Ms Currie sent to a friend detailing the injuries she is alleged to have sustained following an altercation with Barba on February 24.

Ms Currie sent a friend a series of text messages describing her injuries before reluctantly sending a picture that showed the lower section of her face covered in blood.

"Nothings funny, you should see my face," Ms Currie wrote.

"It is not good ey (sic). Because it is ugly."

The friend urged Ms Currie to provide more details.

"I just have a busted lip," Ms Currie continued.

"I have to go away for a few days maybe weeks".

Ms Currie was asked by the concerned friend to send a picture so they could see the extent of the alleged injuries to face of Barba’s former partner.

“Ok do u (sic) want blood or the aftermath?" Ms Currie wrote.

"Blerh (sic)."

Ms Currie then set the photograph that was exclusively published in The Sunday Telegraph when the revelations of the assault allegations were revealed.

The picture is now in the hands of the NRL Integrity Unit, which is investigating the alleged assault as well as the possibility the incident was covered up by the club.

“I have the bigggggest bruised jaw ever," Ms Currie said after the friend asked when “he" did this.

“This morning. I can’t even remember how it all came about. I was lying dwn (sic) goin (sic) back to sleep."

The friend asked where "he" was, with Ms Currie stating “he" was at Belmore.

The Daily Telegraph can reveal further details of the alleged incident that saw Barba sent to rehabilitation after being stood down by the club.

Ms Currie told Bulldogs officials Barba confronted her in her Caringbah apartment on the morning of February 24 and asked her whether or not she was having a relationship with another man.

Ms Currie was estranged from Barba at the time and the footballer was in a relationship with another woman.

Barba is understood to have had an issue with the man he suspected had become close with his former partner.

Ms Currie is alleged to have fled over a balcony from the ground floor apartment she formerly shared with Barba before calling the footballer’s manager, Gavin Orr.

Mr Orr took Ms Currie to Belmore where the assault claims were made to Bulldogs coach Des Hasler and former CEO Todd Greenberg.

Both Greenberg and Hasler directed Ms Currie to go to police.

Ms Currie has resumed a relationship with Barba. Contrary to reports, Ms Currie is not living in Brisbane, but plans to move to Queensland with Barba when he begins his new contract with the Broncos.

Barba has admitted to having gambling and alcohol problems, which the Bulldogs have tried to address. The Daily Telegraph can reveal the Bulldogs pay a percentage of Barba’s wage directly into Ms Currie’s account.

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Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
Canterbury Bulldogs investigation is a chance for the NRL to change its ways

WHERE does the NRL's Integrity Unit go ... if it's found the game has no integrity?

The investigation into whether the Canterbury Bulldogs football club acted improperly is a watershed moment for the new NRL administration, and the Australian Rugby League Commission that looks over it.

It is a chance to say old ways no longer work.It is a chance to draw a line for fresh standards.

It is a chance to tell us that it’s okay to say we trust in a game we have already given our hearts to.And, if it is not any of those, then the game is dead.

We believe in a lie.

How it looks from here, former Canterbury chief executive Todd Greenberg, now the NRL’s head of football, seems to me to have been too clever in his handling of the Barba allegations.The cruel irony is that Greenberg, the bright young face of the game, might become the victim of old school ways.

Faced with domestic violence allegations against Dally M Medal winner Ben Barba, Greenberg handled it in a way that soon had most, unaware of the truth, applauding his management skills.

He told no one of the allegation while standing Barba down and forcing treatment, citing the more palatable “alcohol and gambling” issues as reasons why.

Drawing from the textbook Management Secrets of the 1970s, for a while it looked like everybody was a winner.The game was portrayed as caring, concerned. A sympathetic arm was put around Barba. The Dogs picked themselves up and got on with it.

Until the photo of Barba’s former partner Ainslie Currie emerged on Sunday, with split lip, followed by Tuesday’s series of damning text messages.

The story was blown.

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Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
Coach Des Hasler backs Canterbury Bulldogs' response to Ben Barba assault allegations

  • AAP
  • SEPTEMBER 04, 2013 2:04PM

CANTERBURY coach Des Hasler has backed the club's handling of Ben Barba's early season suspension, as the under siege fullback gave his injured ankle a good workout in avoiding the media at Sydney Airport.

Not named to play against Brisbane tomorrow night due to the injury, Barba looked in good nick as he bounded up the stairs today, desperately trying to avoid being detected by reporters already engaged in an interview.

Hasler said the Dally M medal winner has still not been given the green light to face the Broncos.

The Bulldogs coach spoke out about the circumstances surrounding the club's standing down of Barba in February, after a Sunday Telegraph report of an alleged assault on a female the day before Barba was suspended.

A photo was published showing blood coming from a woman's lip.Hasler confirmed Barba's partner Ainslie Currie came to the club to voice concerns regarding the star fullback.

"I'm very comfortable with the procedure that the club has taken,'' Hasler said.

"Obviously the alleged photo is disturbing but at the same stage the club never has received any complaint or any plaintiff in relation to that allegation."

Asked about Currie's contact with the club, Hasler said: "At the time, when she came to us to speak, she came looking for support. I was quite happy with the procedure the club went through.''

As for Barba's chances of facing the Broncos, Hasler was keeping his cards close to his chest.

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Danny 'Bedsy' Buderus
Former Canterbury Bulldogs superstar Ben Barba missing in action at rehab sessions

SHAMED Bulldogs star Ben Barba walked out on the only professional counselling session he attended despite agreeing to a "strict" 12-month rehabilitation program sparked by allegations he punched his former partner in the face.

Club sources said the team failed to act on Barba’s refusal to continue the sessions despite CEO Todd Greenberg publicly declaring the star fullback would "absolutely" be stood down if he failed to complete the full-time rehabilitation program at the South Pacific Rehab Hospital.

The NRL was forced to launch an independent investigation into Greenberg and the club’s handling of the Barba assault allegations after The Sunday Telegraph revealed Barba’s partner went to Mr Greenberg and coach Des Hasler on February 24, claiming she was assaulted.

Yesterday, Mr Greenberg and the Bulldogs were cleared of any wrongdoing by the independent investigation. An NRL statement said the report prepared by Tony Bannon SC "found that based on the facts at hand the club was not in a position to establish an act of domestic violence".Mr Bannon said: "On present information there is no basis for the NRL acting against the club or against Ben Barba."

However, the NRL’s statement does not address the assault allegations. An investigator rang The Sunday Telegraph during the course of the investigation to say they were not looking into whether an assault had taken place, just whether the club had acted appropriately.

After the assault allegations were made on February 24, Mr Greenberg contacted a domestic violence counselling service before deciding not to tell the NRL about the incident.The club stood Barba down for alcohol and gambling issues and then booked him into the northern beaches medical institution for a four-week program.

However, Barba checked himself out on Wednesday, May 13, to attend a pre-booked driver’s licence test at the Miranda Roads and Traffic Authority. A Sunday Telegraph investigation can also reveal the full details of the club’s failed bid to rehabilitate the fallen star.

At the club’s request, Barba subsequently agreed to attend the facility every Wednesday to be counselled on domestic violence and the other issues. But he failed to complete a single session, walking out of the facility during a coffee break on March 20 and never returning.

A well-placed source has confirmed Barba was dropped off at the facility by a friend for the session which was scheduled to begin at 5.30pm and finish at 10pm. But Barba left about 8pm and told the friend he never intended to return because the counselling was a waste of time and he needed to play football.

Barba resumed full-time training with the squad earlier that week and made a return the following Friday. Despite Mr Greenberg’s declaration that Barba’s counselling would be enforced, the club gave Barba permission to skip his next scheduled counselling session because he needed to train with the side on the Wednesday ahead of his comeback two days later.

The club subsequently agreed that Barba did not have time to travel from his Cronulla home to the northern beaches facility because of his footballing commitments and began searching for a Sutherland Shire service to continue his rehabilitation.

No such medical counsellor was found and Barba only attended two Bulldogs-run mediation sessions with former partner Ainslie Currie. Ms Currie would not be interviewed by the investigator but her lawyer repeated her earlier public denials that an assault ever took place.

Well-placed sources allege the Bulldogs reluctantly gave up on their attempts to coerce Barba to continue rehabilitation with medical professionals, instead planning an exit strategy that ultimately resulted in Barba being released from the final two years of his contract to join the Brisbane Broncos.