Salford Red Devils have been deducted six points and fined £5,000 after being found guilty by an independent tribunal of breaching the RFL operational rules and salary cap regulations concerning contractual arrangements made with three players in 2014 and 2015.
Hetherington declined to comment on the punishment, but said the RFL is right to clamp down on clubs who break the rules. I think it is unacceptable for any club to be breaching the salary cap, particularly so blatantly as appears to be this case,” he stated.
“There’s been examples when it has been ambiguous or might have been down to an anomaly or lack of understanding, but that doesn’t appear to be this case. It is a clear breach and nothing other than pure cheating. That is totally unacceptable. It is never acceptable for administrators to be cheating and the real victims in all this are the Salford fans, players and coaching staff.
“They are the ones you have to feel sorry for, because they have worked so hard to achieve the points they have in Super League, only to have them taken away through no fault of their own. They are not complicit in this and it strikes at the heart of their efforts. That is the lesson for all administrators.”
Salford intend to appeal the verdict.