Curtis Scott is free to start the NRL season with Canberra after the league declared he would not fall under the code's no-fault stand-down policy.
Scott is defending six charges from his Australia Day incident, including two of assaulting police after his night out ended in Moore Park.
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Under the NRL's rules brought in after last year's summer of hell, players facing a charge of 11 years or more are automatically stood down by head office.
Scott's charges only carry a maximum of five years, and the league has used their discretion to opt against a ban that would have lasted the length of his court proceedings.
"Having considered the charges against Scott, the NRL has determined that he should not be prevented from playing whilst he responds to them," the NRL said in a statement.
"The NRL regards the charges as extremely serious and the Raiders have been advised Scott will face a significant penalty if found guilty of the charges."
The news has been met with anger from many fans, who insist that charges of assaulting police should warrant an automatic stand-down.
Others slammed the NRL’s inconsistency when it comes to dishing out punishment for players, citing Mitchell Pearce as a prime example.
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Pearce was famously banned for eight matches after being captured on video simulating a sex act with a dog on Australia Day in 2016.
Dragons star Jack De Belin is currently sidelined while he fights multiple charges of sexual assault.
While Manly's Manase Fainu has also been ruled out under the NRL's No-Fault Stand Down policy as he awaits trial over an alleged church dance stabbing.
Yet the NRL’s decision to allow Scott to play has left many fans baffled and angry.
Wow !— The Oracle (@BigOtrivia) March 4, 2020
So Curtis Scott is permitted to play in round one. Yet another farcical decision by the NRL led by the incompetence of Todd Greenberg.
The inconsistencies in the rulings they hand down beggars belief. #ItsAFrigginLottery
"Play" with a dog and cop 8 weeks. Assault a police officer....free to play.— Mr Ives (@real_MrIves) March 4, 2020
Unbelievable...give credit where it is due, they are consistent in being inconsistent. Not even a week for bringing the game in disrepute.— sloaney (@0570Mark) March 4, 2020
Transparency or lack of is biggest problem in NRL— adawes (@adawesy1) March 4, 2020
NRL No Fault Policy is an automatic stand down until verdict.— Nathan (@SeaEagleSpur) March 4, 2020
Curtis Scott = several charges, including assault of a police officer and he’s allowed to play? pic.twitter.com/wpNVydh1gA
The NRL deeming Curtis Scott assaulting police officers and resisting arrest isn’t serious enough to be stood down LMAO— Josh (@JoshieF97) March 4, 2020
Others argued that without seeing vision of the alleged incident, it's difficult to pass judgement on the NRL's decision to allow Scott to play.
The NRL said they would review the footage before making a decision its maybe not the matt lodge style incident it was first sold as— Sambo (@RoostersSambo) March 4, 2020
He’s seen the body cam footage apparently. Hard to criticise judgement without seeing. Time will tell no doubt.— Lucas70 (@luke_b70) March 4, 2020
No doubt the case is not as strong as first thought— John Scorse (@JohnScorse) March 4, 2020
The decision comes as a massive boost for the Raiders.
Scott was only brought to the club from Melbourne over the off-season and fills the void left by Joey Leilua.
The ex-Storm centre has scored 18 tries in 48 NRL games, but is considered one of the most exciting your prospects in the competition.