Api Ratuniyarawa, the former London Irish and Northampton second row, has admitted sexually assaulting three women in a Cardiff city-centre bar before he was due to represent the Barbarians against Wales.
The 37-year-old, who has 43 caps for Fiji, pleaded guilty to two counts of assault by penetration and one of sexual assault at the Revolution bar between Oct 31 and Nov 1. Ratuniyarawa, of Kislingbury, Northamptonshire, pleaded not guilty to two further accounts of sexual assault, which was accepted by the prosecution at Cardiff Crown Court.
A court had previously been told, by prosecutor Michael Evans: “The three incidents happened independently of each other, with the women not known to each other or to the defendant before that night.”
Ratuniyara’s “stringent” bail conditions will continue, meaning he cannot leave his house between 7pm and 7am GMT and must report to Northampton police station every day. He is also unable to enter Wales unless for court proceedings, and is not allowed to contact any witnesses in the case nor enter any licensed premises. The forward has a wife and four children.
Following the charges brought on Nov 4, the day of the Barbarians’ match against Wales at the Principality Stadium, the invitational side were forced to make a late change in their matchday 23, with Ratuniyarawa removed from the squad and replaced by Welsh international Aaron Shingler.
After starting this season as an injury joker at French club Bayonne, Ratuniyarawa was called up to the Fijian World Cup squad as an injury replacement for Temo Mayanavanua despite initially missing out on selection. The forward also represented his country at the 2015 and 2019 tournaments.
Ratuniyarawa made more than 100 appearances for Northampton Saints in the Premiership before heading to London Irish, representing the Exiles during the season in which they went to the wall.