NRL Player Tyrone May Fronts Court, Magistrate Steps Down From Sex Tape Trial
Penrith’s Tyrone May will have to wait another month to learn his NRL future after his case was adjourned in his first court appearance since being charged over alleged leaked sex tapes.
Police allege the Panthers utility recorded and shared sexual acts with two women without their consent in separate incidents last year.
The videos, which began circulating in March, allegedly show May calling one woman a “f***ing ratbag”.
May’s face is not visible in either video, but a distinctive tattoo on the man's left arm can be seen.
The 22-year-old Panthers player appeared briefly at Penrith Local Court on Wednesday, where his matter was adjourned until June to allow police to see a brief of evidence.
When he returns however, May will face a different magistrate.
Magistrate Geoff Hiatt announced he would be disqualifying himself from the case due to previous connections with the Penrith Panthers.
Hiatt’s father, John, served as Vice Chairman of the club for six years before stepping down in 2015. He had been on the board since 2003.
Hiatt said while he believed he could separate his personal connection from the facts of the case, “for the sake of fairness to all” he said it was appropriate to remove himself.
May was accompanied at court by his manager and lawyer, and did not enter a plea.
He said nothing during proceedings or before leaving in a red Mercedes, keeping his head down as he got in the car.
The young player is charged with two counts of recording intimate image without consent, and two counts of disseminate image without consent.
Police allege May filmed sex acts with one woman in Coffs Harbour in February of last year, before filming another woman in Kingswood in May.
While authorities say the sex was consensual, detectives claim the women did not know about the videos until they began to circulate.
May will remain on bail until he returns to court on June 17.
He is one of three players stood down by the NRL under the game’s controversial new “no-fault” stand down policy for serious criminal charges.
Though currently unable to play, the five-eighth continues to train with his teammates.
If Dragons star Jack de Belin is successful in having his own ban overturned in Federal Court next week, however, the NRL’s policy could be short-lived.
De Belin has pleaded not guilty to a charge of aggravated sexual assault, and was the first NRL player sidelined under the tough new system.