Israel Folau remained defiant about controversial post despite chances to reduce punishment by taking it down - report

Under-fire rugby star Israel Folau was reportedly given a chance to save his career by Rugby Australia after his latest controversial and religious social media post.

Folau is awaiting punishment after an independent panel found him guilty of a "high level" breach of his contract earlier this week after he posted on Instagram in April that hell awaits homosexuals and other groups.

But the Daily Telegraph reports Folau had a chance to reduce that breach to a low or mid-level offense if he had taken down the post with that action being viewed as remorseful.

Despite advice to remove the picture, Folau stood his ground and earned a high level breach - the only tier that allows Rugby Australia to terminate his contract.

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Stevenson said the defence Folau was simply quoting the Bible doesn't work in today's society. Source: Breakfast

Folau's defiance continued in his three-day code of conduct hearing last weekend where he was reportedly given numerous chances to declare he wouldn't make posts that target the LGBT community but the fullback insisted he wouldn't change and he'd carry on sharing his beliefs with his 354,000 followers.

The 30-year-old said his lack of remorse was because he made the post with love, not malice.

The best punishment Folau can hope for now is a suspension and/or fine but termination is likely although the independent panel's decision from the hearing won't be known for another couple of days.

"That's not part of the deal"

Qantas boss Alan Joyce Source: Wikimediacommons

Qantas boss Alan Joyce has added his opinions to the ongoing debate surrounding Folau, stating he supports Rugby Australia's hardline approach to dealing with Folau's social media use.

Joyce told the Australian Financial Review he was "quite happy" about the process taken against Folau.

"We don't sponsor something to get involved in controversy," Joyce said.

"That's not part of the deal."

Joyce added Qantas-sponsored brands have the right set-ups to deal with issues like the one created by Folau's post, meaning the Australian airline company didn't need to be overly-involved.

"We expect our partners to take the appropriate action. It's their issue, they have to deal with it."

The airline also sponsors Football Federation Australia, the Australian Olympic Committee, Paralympics Australia, Basketball Australia and Cricket Australia.

Source: 1 NEWS