JavaScript disabled. Please enable JavaScript to use My News, My Clippings, My Comments and user settings.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

If you have trouble accessing our login form below, you can go to our login page.

Essendon confidential: 11 to see ASADA documents

Eleven Essendon board members and senior figures will have access to confidential documents supplied by the Australian Sports Anti-Doping Authority  as part of the court case brought by the Bombers and James Hird.

Justice John Middleton, the judge hearing the case, has released the court orders detailing who will be allowed access to key documents. The Bombers and Hird allege that the joint investigation by the AFL and ASADA last year into the club's supplements program was illegal.

Middleton has ruled that any information "discovered, produced or filed" by ASADA will be available not only to Essendon's lawyers but also to club chairman Paul Little, his deputy Paul Brasher and fellow club directors Jo-Anne Albert, Chris Heffernan, Greg Brown, Kevin Egan, Phil Pryor, Darryl Jackson and Simon Madden provided they sign a confidentiality agreement.

Newly promoted chief executive Xavier Campbell and media and marketing chief Justin Rodski will also be granted access should they also agree to confidentiality.

Middleton has also detailed who can access documents and information supplied by the 34 current and former players who have been issued with show-cause notices.

The players have insisted their anonymity, particularly in relation to the media and general public, is crucial.

Middleton says lawyers for the Bombers will have access to confidential player information. However, he does not specifically state whether the Essendon board or senior figures will have access but says "representatives of the applicant [Essendon] who have signed a confidentiality undertaking" will.

Lawyers for Essendon, Hird and ASADA continue to work through the discovery stage.

Hird has a hearing scheduled in front of a court registrar on Friday should there be any difficulties with his subpoena of information from the AFL. This hearing was adjourned from July 14.

Hird's subpoena is likely to focus on how AFL integrity department boss Brett Clothier defined the investigation and what arrangements were put in place. One argument Hird has is that he was not afforded the right to silence under the anti-doping code when he was interviewed by the AFL and ASADA last year.  

Hird has already mentioned AFL chief executive Gillon McLachlan and his predecessor Andrew Demetriou in documents lodged with the Federal Court.

The case goes to trial on August 11, with Middleton setting aside three days for the hearing. It could then be another month before he releases his ruling.

If Hird and the Bombers win, ASADA will need to decide whether to re-issue the show-cause notices, possibly not using any evidence that was considered tainted.

If ASADA's investigation is cleared, players almost certainly would have to respond to their show-cause notices - the first step towards infraction notices being issued.

Having returned home after completing a business course in France, Hird will not have a direct role with the Bombers for the rest of their 2014 campaign. He, instead, will begin planning for next season when he resumes as coach. However, if players are eventually served infraction notices, the Bombers may decide he cannot return.

Featured advertisers