Police investigate rape complaint against England rugby players
Jun 18, 2008, 22:13 GMT
Wellington - Several England rugby players allegedly took women back to their rooms in an Auckland hotel last weekend, New Zealand newspapers reported on Thursday as police reportedly were investigating a rape allegation.
Police will only say they are investigating an 'allegation of a serious nature' about an incident at the Hilton Hotel after the team was beaten by New Zealand's national All Blacks on Saturday and said no formal complaint has been laid.
Team officials have clammed up, and Television New Zealand is the only media organization to report that rape is being investigated.
But a 22-year-old woman identified only as 'Angel Barbie' was quoted in newspapers as saying she and about four others went back to the hotel with English players after drinking with them in a city bar until the early hours of Sunday.
She said she spent the night with one player and later in the morning four others came into the room and pulled the duvet off them. 'I was sort of semi-dressed so it wasn't too bad,' she told the Dominion Post.
'Angel Barbie' said she believed the players went to other rooms where women had slept with players and also pulled the duvets off their semi-naked bodies. 'They were doing the rounds,' she said.
The reports said 'Angel Barbie' was not the woman involved in the so-called serious allegation reported to police.
A team official told a news conference on Wednesday, 'The England rugby team has been informed by Auckland police that an allegation has been made against four members of the England playing squad.
'Whilst no formal complaint has been made, we are cooperating with the police in their enquiries.'
A police spokeswoman said the allegation could 'end up going nowhere' unless someone was able to confirm it and a formal complaint was laid.
The England team is due to leave New Zealand on Sunday.