Hearing Details: 2 August 2015 @ 5pm AEST, 7pm NZST, 9am SAST and 4am ART via videoconference
Appeals Committee: Jannie Lubbe SC (Chairman), Terry Willis, Mike Heron QC
Player: Michael Hooper
Date of Incident: 25 July 2015
Outcome of Original Hearing: At a SANZAR judicial hearing on 29 and 30 July 2015, SANZAR Judicial Officer, Nigel Hampton QC, found Michael Hooper guilty of contravening Law 10.4 (a) Punching or striking. Hooper was suspended for 1 week up to and including 1 August 2015
SANZAR NEWS RELEASE
A SANZAR Appeals Committee, chaired by Jannie Lubbe SC (South Africa) and comprising Terry Willis (Australia) and Mike Heron QC (New Zealand) unanimously dismissed both appeals brought by SANZAR and The Australian Rugby Union (ARU) on behalf of Michael Hooper.
The Committee dismissed the ARU appeal on behalf of Michael Hooper on the basis that the appellant was unable to show that the Judicial Officer erred in law in finding that Hooper's striking of Nicolas Sanchez from Argentina was a breach of Law 10.4 (a).
The Committee also dismissed the appeal brought by SANZAR that the Judicial Officer's sanction of one week was unduly lenient. The Committee found the Judicial Officer was correct in the exercise of his discretion that the offending was low-end.
As such, the player's suspension from all forms of the game for one week was confirmed.
Under the SANZAR Judicial Rules, all first instance formal judicial hearings are reviewed by an independent Appeals Review Officer. The review officer, the Honourable Graeme Mew (Canada), examined the Hooper case and in his determination, referred it to a SANZAR Appeals Committee to review the sanction handed down by Judicial Officer Nigel Hampton QC. This was the first judicial hearing reviewed by an independent Appeals Review Officer.