Brisbane have endured another blight on their poor start to the NRL season, with rising forward Payne Haas convicted of driving offences.
The 19-year-old was was caught driving while using his mobile phone and without a licence in Ipswich last month as he drove to training.
The 194cm, 119kg prop appeared in Ipswich Magistrates Court on Monday to plead guilty to the offences before being fined $500 and losing his licence for six months.
Haas was scrolling through his phone at a red light in his suburb Redbank Plains as he drove to Broncos training last month when police pulled up alongside his white Land Rover.
They saw him head down with both hands on the phone.
He was pulled over but could not produce his learner licence because he had lost it due to demerit points.
Haas, who played his fourth NRL game in the Broncos' loss to Wests Tigers on Thursday, did not comment outside court.
It was his first game of the season after serving a four-game ban and being fined $20,000 for failing to co-operate in an investigation relating to an incident involving his family.
The NRL integrity unit probe stemmed from two off-field incidents involving his family members, one a wild brawl at a local rugby league game late last year.
It was not alleged he was violent.
But his off-field actions feed into concerns over Anthony Seibold's Broncos as they reel from a 1-4 start to the season to sit 13th on the ladder.
Club greats Gorden Tallis and Justin Hodges have led the criticism, last week slamming what they view as a lack of understanding and accountability from the current squad.
Haas showed promising signs in his starting debut last week, making 164 metres and 42 tackles in 62 minutes.
Australian Associated Press