SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - SEPTEMBER 10: Lachie Whitfield of the Giants is tackled by Jarrad McVeigh of the Swans during the 2016 AFL First Qualifying Final match between the Sydney Swans and the GWS Giants at ANZ Stadium on September 10, 2016 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Michael Willson/AFL Media/Getty Images)

AFL confirms Whitfield and co banned

AFL CEO Gillon McLachlan has confirmed that GWS player Lachie Whitfield and former officials, Graeme Allan and Craig Lambert have been suspended.

Whitfield has been suspended for six months, while Allan and Lambert have both received 12 month bans.

The 22-year-old is accused of hiding at former Giants’ official Craig Lambert’s house in order to avoid drug testers last season, with the help of former GWS football chief, Graeme Allan.

“I reckon the sanctions are appropriate,” McLachlan said of the suspensions.

“He’s a 19-year-old kid who took advice from his supervisors, or the people who were looking after him. There’s a different allocation of responsibility. There’s not one piece of evidence or any allegation of anything to do with performance-enhancing drugs.

“(It is) a poor reflection (on the professionals involved). It is a mistake that is hard to believe.”

Lambert is currently the player welfare manager at the Brisbane Lions, while Allen joined the Magpies at the end of the season as the club’s footy boss.

The trio were sanctioned under the AFL’s disrepute rules and not the anti-doping code, avoiding potential four-year bans from the Australian Sport Anti-Doping Agency.

McLachlan did not confirm whether or not the club will be stripped of draft picks as part of the sanction.