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Former Super League and NRL star Manu Vatuvei to be sentenced next week on drug charges – faces possible life in jail

Manu Vatuvei Salford

Former Salford Red Devils and New Zealand Warriors star Manu Vatuvei is set to be sentenced before Christmas.

Former Salford Red Devils and New Zealand Warriors star Manu Vatuvei admitted importing methamphetamine back in October, which could see him facing life in prison.

Vatuvei was charged with both possessing the drug for supply as well as importing it, though he previously denied the charges.

The Warriors icon was charged in December 2019 with possessing methamphetamine for supply and importing the Class A drug.

Vatuvei appeared at Manukau District Court in October where he admitted a representative charge of importing methamphetamine.

Judge Jonathan Moses convicted the former explosive winger of the charges and granted his application for bail on a curfew, until sentencing in the next week alongside his brother.

Vatuvei retired from professional rugby league due to injury in 2017, after a career spanning more than 13 years, heading into a short-lived boxing career and then taking the plunge into real estate.

The powerful winger played eight games for Salford in Super League over a period of two seasons.

The star conducted an early Christmas with his family where the exchanging of presents took place with Vatuvei appearing humble.

He had previously owned up to the charge after a suppression order on his name was set to expire.

“Just wanted to get something off my chest – something that’s been holding me down for a while now,” Vatuvei said on his Instagram page.

“I’d rather you hear it from myself rather than from anyone else in the media.

“But, in 2019 I was charged with importation, posession and supply of methamphetamine.

“All these charges are accusations and I’ll be fighting my innocence for these charges.

“I know there will be a lot of questions wanting answers, but I’ve been advised by my legal team that’s all I could talk about.

“Hopefully you can respect that and please respect the privacy of my family while I go through this battle.”

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