NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said the investigation into Cronulla’s potential salary cap breaches do not compare to previous scandals that encompassed Melbourne, Parramatta or Manly.
The governing body is currently assessing the Sharks’ case, which includes going through thousands of emails and documents over the past three months.
It all relates to an initial $50,000 third-party payment, which led to approximately $200,000 in undisclosed settlements, with the whole case dating back to 2015.
Greenberg said the Sharks salary cap has been cleared for 2018, but could not confirm the same result for their 2016-premiership winning season.
“I want to make two things very clear. Firstly, it was the Sharks that self-reported their concerns to the NRL and who asked for this investigation which we are now conducting,” Greenberg told reporters.
“In other words, the club has done the right thing in alerting the integrity unit to some concerns and we are currently investigating those concerns.
“Secondly and most importantly, on the information available to us, every club in the NRL – and that includes the Sharks – are cap compliant for 2018. In fact, the Sharks are significantly under the salary cap for this year and will remain so for the finals series.
“So the 2018 finals series will not be affected by this investigation. Naturally, if we uncover evidence of salary cap cheating we will deal with it and deal with it appropriately.
“There will be consequences for anyone involved. Again, it is a reminder to every person in every single club – if you cheat the cap, ultimately you will be caught.”
Asked about the investigation into their 2016 season salary cap, Greenberg replied: “I can’t guarantee anything. What I can tell people is we are investigating some of these issues, we still have some work to do, but on the matters before me as they currently sit, this is not on the scale of previous salary cap investigations at clubs like Manly, Parramatta or further back at the Storm.”