France prop Mohamed Haouas will appear in court on Tuesday after being charged with “domestic violence without causing sick leave”.
The Montpellier tighthead was arrested on Friday following an alleged incident in front of a shopping centre.
According to a source, an argument broke out between Haouas and his wife which led to the prop allegedly kicking her in the ankle before striking her in the face.
Potential lengthy prison sentence
Witnesses were present while it was also captured on CCTV. If found guilty, it carries a maximum sentence of three years in prison.
Haouas has been remanded in custody because of a previous conviction and trial.
“The judge decided to remand him in custody,” Haouas’ lawyer Marc Gallix told AFP.
“The main issues on Tuesday is that I manage to get him released from prison.”
In February 2022, the France tighthead received an 18-month suspended sentence following his involvement in a series of robberies in April 2014.
He is also awaiting the verdict of another trial for his role in a brawl a decade ago, with the court’s decision on that case due to be revealed on June 30.
Haouas’ Rugby World Cup was already in serious doubt following his on-field ill-discipline during the recent Six Nations.
The prop was sent off for headbutting Ben White 12 minutes into his international return, which came three years after he was red carded for punching another Scotland player, flanker Jamie Ritchie, at Murrayfield.
Montpellier said in a statement they “condemn all acts of violence of any kind and expects exemplary behaviour from its employees”.
“Montpellier Herault Rugby learned, through the press, of the placement in police custody of Mohamed Haouas this Friday, May 26,” the club continued.
“While respecting the principle of presumption of innocence, the club is convinced that justice will shed light on the facts.
“The club’s management, which will not make any further comment, is awaiting court decisions and will then determine the follow-up to be given to this case.”
Haouas will leave Montpellier in the off-season to join Clermont Auvergne with the tighthead hoping for a fresh start.
“I’ve decided to leave Montpellier before the end of my contract to have a complete change, a change of house, of city, of life,” he said.