Monday, April 28, 2014
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Australian Olympic Medalist Charged On Drug Possession

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[April 28, 2014]  MELBOURNE (Reuters)  Australian former Olympic swimmer Geoff Huegill has been charged with drug possession by police in Sydney after being arrested at a horse racing meeting at the weekend.

Huegill, who won a medley relay silver and a 100 meters butterfly bronze for Australia at the 2000 Sydney Olympics, was charged with his wife on Saturday and will appear at a Sydney court next month.

"Police were patrolling Randwick racecourse as part of their general duties when they were directed to a suite in the grandstand by security personnel," a police spokeswoman said.

"Police spoke to a 35-year-old old man and his 30-year-old wife, who were alleged to be in possession of a small quantity of white powder, believed to be cocaine."

Huegill posted links on his Twitter account on Saturday to pictures of himself and his wife beaming in a room at the race meeting while drinking champagne.


"Enjoying the day with @mshuegill in the Mot suites at Randwick today," a caption read.

Huegill's lawyer Paul Hunt confirmed the couple were issued with a court notice.

"As the matter is not yet resolved, my clients do not intend to make any further comment at this point in time," he said in a statement.

A former 50m butterfly world record holder, Huegill retired from the pool after the 2004 Athens Olympics and battled depression, weight and alcohol problems before making a highly publicised comeback in 2008.

He won golds at the 2010 Commonwealth Games and took a world championship bronze in Shanghai the following year before quitting the pool again after failing to qualify for the 2012 London Games.

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Huegill's drugs charge follows problems with fellow former Australian swimmers in Ian Thorpe and Grant Hackett in recent months.

Five-time Olympic champion Thorpe was checked into a health clinic in February to treat depression after he was found disoriented and behaving oddly near a parked car in a Sydney suburb.

Triple Olympic champion Hackett flew to the United States later the same month to seek treatment for an addiction to a sleeping medication after he was photographed shirtless in the lobby of a Melbourne casino.

(Writing by Ian Ransom; editing by Greg Stutchbury)

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