Carrick Rangers to hold internal review after drugs allegations

Mark Clarke

Mark Clarke

Irish Premier League club Carrick Rangers are to conduct an investigation after it emerged that one of their former players has been accused of drugs offences.

Mark Clarke, 27, who started the current season with the Taylor’s Avenue outfit, has been charged with possessing and importing cocaine, ‘magic mushrooms’ and herbal cannabis.

Clarke had his case mentioned at Antrim Magistrates Court on Tuesday.

He faces six charges including possessing Class A cocaine and another Class A substance - Psilocybin, commonly known as ‘magic mushrooms’. The offences are alleged to have been committed on Tuesday November 3, 2015.

In a statement, Carrick said: “Carrick Rangers FC have commenced an internal review following revelations that were made in the press today in relation to Mark Clarke.

“Mark Clarke has not played or trained with Carrick Rangers since suffering an injury at his place of work in September 2016.

The Board of Carrick Rangers FC would like to make clear that we do not condone any actions that tarnish our reputation or that bring Irish League football into disrepute.

“While the club’s investigation is ongoing, we will make no further comment on this matter.”

No details surrounding the alleged offences were outlined to the court on Tuesday.

The solicitor however applied for legal aid for her Clarke saying he earned £220 a week. District Judge Allan White said he would consider the legal aid matter when he gets proof of the accused’s income. Clarke formerly played for Cliftonville and Glentoran and at the time of the alleged offences was on the books of Warrenpoint Town.