TIO NTFL Tribunal: Finals Week 4

AFL Northern Territory (AFLNT) advises the independent Tribunal sat last night, Tuesday 19 May, to hear one charge from the 2019/20 TIO NTFL Men’s Premier League Grand Final that had been deferred from April due to COVID-19.
Men's Premier League
Ryan Smith, of St Mary’s Football Club, appeared before the independent Tribunal to answer the charge of using abusive, insulting or obscene language towards an umpire at the end of the fourth quarter of the TIO NTFL Men’s Premier League match between St Mary’s and Nightcliff Football Club at TIO Stadium on Saturday 14 March 2020.

Smith intended to plead guilty to the charge but wanted to appear before the Tribunal to have them consider the prescribed penalty. 
Prior to the Tribunal commencing, the reporting officer and St Mary’s advocate came to an agreement that the player had an outstanding record over a 20 year period and that there were extenuating circumstances for the incident.

The parties agreed that the originally prescribed penalty of three matches (with a 100% loading because it was a grand final) should be amended to a two-match penalty with a further two matches wholly suspended (100% loading) due to Smith’s good behaviour over a prolonged period.

The Tribunal agreed with the amended two-match penalty and two matches wholly suspended on the basis that Smith follows through with his intentions to send a written apology to the umpire. 

Appeals Process

Offending clubs (alleged) and/or the Controlling Body have until 5pm Thursday 13 February to lodge an appeal in writing to the AFLNT Football Operations team. The grounds for appeal under the 2019 State and Territory Tribunal Guidelines are as follows:
4.3 Grounds for Appeal
Except where otherwise determined by the Controlling Body, a Person found guilty of a Reportable Offence by the Tribunal, or the Controlling Body may only appeal to the Appeal Board in respect of a decision made by the Tribunal under these Guidelines on one or more of the following grounds:
(a) that there was an error of law;
(b) that the decision was so unreasonable that no Tribunal acting reasonably could have come to that decision having regard to the evidence before it;
(c) the classification of the level of the offence was manifestly excessive or inadequate; or
(d) that the sanction imposed was manifestly excessive or inadequate.

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