HBC attorneys settle rape claims against Australian rugby star

HBC partners John Clune and Keith Edwards settled a sexual assault lawsuit this month against former NFL football player and Australian National Rugby League star Jarryd Hayne. Hayne rose to football prominence winning the NRL player of the year in multiple years and then the international rugby player of the year in 2009 before securing a contract with the NFL. The firms’ client, identified as JV in the lawsuit, accused Hayne of forcibly raping her after a night out in a bar in San Jose, California while Hayne was employed by the San Francisco 49ers football team. JV reported the matter to the police but the Santa Clara County District Attorney chose not to file a criminal action. The terms of the settlement remain confidential but under California’s new #MeToo law prohibiting confidentiality agreements, the parties are not restrained from speaking about the case. Since the filing of HBC's lawsuit, Hayne has been accused of another sexual assault in Australia for which he is currently being prosecuted and faces up to 20 years in prison. The civil case is one of several sexual assault matters that HBC has handled against professional athletes and the second against NFL athletes in as many years. Read more about the case here.