League player facing jail term over alleged alcohol-fuelled brawl

A MAGISTRATE has warned a Tamworth footballer he faces time behind bars for his part in an alleged alcohol-fuelled street brawl.

Magistrate Roger Prowse rejected a fresh bid for bail by Matthew Zackerman Nean, 22, in court yesterday and said he didn’t want to give him false hope that he will stay out of custody.

“He is going to jail,” Magistrate Prowse told Tamworth Local Court.

“I don’t propose to give him that false hope. Bail is refused.”

Nean has pleaded guilty to recklessly causing grievous bodily harm, assault occasioning actual bodily harm and affray.

Magistrate Prowse said two of the charges were serious.

“There is no other penalty other than fulltime custody,” he said.

Nean’s solicitor, Wendy McAuliffe, made an application for bail for the 22-year-old to reside in a rehabilitation centre to get treatment.

“He has had on-and-off issues with alcohol,” she told the court.

“What he would like is a chance to rehabilitate himself.”

Police prosecutor Sergeant Rob Baillie opposed bail but Ms McAuliffe said her client was “considerably intoxicated” on the night of the alleged incident in Kable Ave earlier this month.

“He understands he is a person who can’t drink alcohol,” she said.

“Whilst there are [family and friends] here to support Mr Nean, they don’t support his behaviour.”

Police allege Nean was the ringleader in the alleged brawl on January 12. He is accused of attacking two men who were taken to hospital. 

One victim was knocked unconscious.

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