Leeds Rhinos: Gary Hetherington charged for 'witch-hunt' comment

Kevin Sinfield and Gary Hetherington
In August, Hetherington (right) saw the Rhinos lift the Challenge Cup for the first time since 1999

Leeds Rhinos chief executive Gary Hetherington has been charged with improper conduct by the Rugby Football League.

Hetherington called an investigation into claims Zak Hardaker used homophobic language a "witch-hunt".

The investigation into the England full-back has since been dropped.

The RFL said:external-link "Gary Hetherington has been charged with improper conduct for questioning the motivation and integrity of an RFL investigation."

The statement continued: "Mr Hetherington is charged with a breach of Operational Rule D1.8 (c) (Improper Conduct) by engaging in conduct which is prejudicial to the interests of the game.

"The charge will be heard by an independent operational rules tribunal on Wednesday, 1 October."

The Rhinos, who won the Challenge Cup final in August, were knocked out of the Super League play-offs by Catalan Dragons on Saturday.