MELBOURNE midfielder Jake Melksham was handed a $10,000 fine this week after it was revealed he misled an AFL gambling inquiry into unusual activity on his personal betting account.
According to league officials, the 25-year-old came under scrutiny because it appeared as though he had allowed someone else to access his account for the purpose of making wagers.
The activity in question occurred in June last year, while the former Essendon player was serving a suspension over the Windy Hill club’s supplements scandal.
While it is understood that Melksham placed no bets on football matches, the league’s rules are clear regarding the provision of false or misleading information to an official inquiry.
“It is crucial for the integrity of the competition that participants in the AFL give honest evidence in the course of investigations under the AFL rules,” AFL general counsel Andrew Dillon said on Thursday.
“Jake has acknowledged his mistake in this case, is genuinely remorseful and will assist us to deliver this message in the future to players coming into the AFL competition.”
At a hearing held early this week, Melksham pleaded guilty and agreed to assist the AFL in future gambling education efforts.
Josh Mahoney, the football manager at Melbourne, said the number 10 pick from the 2009 national draft was “genuinely remorseful”.
“Although Jake has been cleared of any wrongdoing relating to the betting activity from June last year, his mistake was not presenting all the information to the AFL investigators at the time of initial contact,” Mahoney said.
“He accepts his sanction on that front.
“All players and staff, when asked to be involved in an AFL investigation, must take them seriously and provide all the information when required.
“Jake is genuinely remorseful about his mistake and as a club we will continue to support and educate all our players on the importance of these matters.”
Melksham will receive no official suspension and is expected to line up for the Demons in their Monday night clash with Richmond.
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