'Fighting my innocence': NRL fan favourite facing life in prison

Riley Morgan
·Sports Reporter
·2-min read
Manu Vatuvei (pictured) emotional in his last game for the New Zealand Warriors.
Manu Vatuvei (pictured) has revealed he is facing serious drugs charges in New Zealand. (Getty Images)

Former Warriors winger Manu Vatuvei has announced he is the sportsman facing serious drug charges in New Zealand.

The former New Zealand rugby league international was charged with possessing methamphetamine for supply and import in December 2019.

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Vatuvei, who denies the claims, had not been named until now as he was granted name suppression by the court.

With suppression set to lapse this week, Vatuvei took to Instagram to announce the allegations.

"I wanted to get something off my chest ... I'd rather you'd hear it from myself," he said.

"In 2019 I was charged with importation, possession and supply of methamphetamine. All of these charges are accusations and I will be fighting my innocence.

"I know there'll be a lot of questions that are wanting answers but I've been advised from my legal team that's all I can talk about."

Vatuvei faces trial later this year for charges that could see him face life in prison if found guilty.

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Vatuvei's NRL career

Vatuvei, also known as 'The Beast', enjoyed a stellar career as the winger for the New Zealand Warriors.

He was part of the New Zealand team that won the 2008 World Cup.

Vatuvei is the New Zealand Warriors all-time leading try scorer with 152 tries in 226 matches.

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