Gold Coast Titans Players Greg Bird, Beau Falloon, Ashley Harrison, and Kalifa Faifai Loa have had their charges for cocaine possession dismissed in a Southport Magistrates court this week.
The charges were dropped due to lack of evidence.
Magistrate Callaghan said the prosecution had presented no evidence to substantiate intercepted phone conversations between the players and Joseph Touma pertained to cocaine. The prosecution had said the defendants had used a code-word when referring to the substance. McCallum argued that the word used could refer to anything.
But trio Dave Taylor, Joe Vickery, and Jamie Dowling are yet to stand trial for drug charges. Their defence lawyer, Chris McCallum conceded there was a prima facie case against them.
The scandal emerged in March this year, engulfing former and present NRL players.
Bird has a long and tarnished record both on and off the field. But now says he would be ‘honoured’ to captain the Gold Coast Titans (again).
Bird was the co-captain with Manly-bound Nate Myles in 2013-14; but was stripped of his position when he was caught urinating in public, in December of last year.
The dropped charges come as a huge relief to the struggling Gold Coast club. They narrowly avoided the wooden spoon this year and are desperate to organise a successful strategy for the 2016 season.
Whether Bird will play any part in that strategy remains to be seen.