Furious Alastair Clarkson says his chances of a fair hearing over Hawks racism and abortion accusations has been ‘corrupted’ by leak of club’s review
- Alastair Clarkson has released a second statement about allegations against him
- A Hawthorn report is claimed to contain racism allegations about Clarkson
- It is alleged that he told a First Nations player to end the life of his unborn child
- Clarkson says he still has not been given the opportunity to read the report
- He claims that the AFL investigation could be ‘corrupted’ as a result
Alastair Clarkson has issued a statement denying, for the second time, the shocking racism allegations levelled against him during his time at Hawthorn.
Clarkson, who won four premierships while coach of the Hawks, says he has ‘grave concerns’ over his chances of a fair process with the AFL launching their own investigation into the matter.
A Hawthorn report is claimed to contain accusations that the 54-year-old operated the club’s football department ‘like the Russian mafia’ amid a probe into claims he told a First Nations player to end the life of his unborn child.
Alastair Clarkson has issued a second statement after further allegations were levelled at him
It was further claimed that Clarkson used ‘bullying and intimidation’ against First Nations players and their partners and some incidents were alleged to have been so serious ‘to amount to human rights abuses’.
Clarkson broke his silence last week to deny the claims levelled against him, and released a further statement on Wednesday to state his view that he has not been given the opportunity to make a fair defence and as a result, the investigation is at risk of being ‘irrevocably corrupted’.
‘Since learning of the allegations first reported in the media last Wednesday I have been shocked and deeply distressed,’ Clarkson’s latest statement read.
‘It remains profoundly disappointing that these matters are now being widely canvassed in the public domain without the opportunity being given to me or others to give our accounts or even read the Hawthorn report, which to this day I have not seen.
Clarkson was accused of running Hawthorn ‘like the Russian mafia’ in new explosive claims
However, the 54-year-old believes that his chance of a fair investigation is at risk of corruption
‘The further recent publication of purported extracts from the report means I now have grave concerns that any chance of a fair process and just outcome have been seriously undermined, if not irrevocably corrupted.’
He added that he wished to express ‘in the strongest and most emphatic terms possible’ that he did not behave as the report is said to claim.
‘I believe the genuine affection I held for all the players who walked through the doors into Hawthorn is well known. I have always appreciated and respected the unique journeys of First Nations players into the highest echelons of Australian rules football,’ he said.
‘I have been committed to acknowledging and understanding their many varied experiences and brought all my efforts to ensuring these players are given the opportunity to realise their dreams. But not at any cost, and never at the cost of their families as has been alleged. Any suggestion to the contrary is false and deeply offensive.
Clarkson won four premierships at Hawthorn but his treatment of First Nations players has come under the spotlight
‘People who know me will understand how important family is to me. I have always carried this value into every organisation I have worked with.
‘I acknowledge how difficult it is for any player, and in particular First Nations players to tell their stories about deeply personal matters and I respect every player that has spoken to either the ABC or Phil Egan as part of the Hawthorn Football Club process. Every person has their story and the right to tell it.
‘However, as the allegations against me have been spread widely and sometimes presented as indisputable matters of fact, I must state that my clear memory of the matters reported is very different.’