Two Sydney Swans AFLW players have been charged by police for possessing an illicit substance.

First stated in court records, The Age revealed that Alexia Hamilton and Paige Sheppard were the two players who were found guilty in January, with no conviction recorded.

The duo received a "conditional release order" per Channel 9's Tom Morris, which is "known as a good behaviour bond".

"The league said it's aware of the issue while the Swans denied to comment.

"I understand key officials at the Sydney Swans have been aware for some months.

"This incident, which was not on game day, as a result, doesn't carry the same offence as Melbourne's Joel Smith, is not isolated in football circles.

"It also brings into sharp focus the league's drug policy, which is clearly under significant review."

Since, the league has released a statement and handed down a two-match ban to both players for "conduct unbecoming".

AFL General Counsel Stephen Meade said: “AFLW players, in fact all players are well-educated when it comes to the harms associated with the use of illicit substances.

“While Alexia and Paige have been extremely remorseful and apologetic for their actions, they have a responsibility to themselves, their clubs, and their professional careers to uphold community expectations.

“Our review, in collaboration with the AFLPA, of the AFL's Illicit Drug Policy continues. The AFL expects that that AFLW players will be part of any future policy.  In these circumstances, both players have been dealt with under the AFL Rules and the accountability both publicly and privately is appropriate.”

Both Hamilton and Sheppard have accepted the sanction handed down by the AFL and have expressed deep remorse.

Paige Sheppard said, “I would like to express my remorse and apologise to the Sydney Swans family, my teammates, family and friends for making this mistake. I am fully aware I have made a bad error of judgement and will be working hard to earn back the respect of my teammates.”

Lexi Hamilton said, “I am extremely embarrassed and apologetic for my actions, and the position I have put my family, friends and teammates in. I understand I have significantly broken trust, and I apologise to our members, fans and club partners for that. I accept full responsibility for my actions.”

Swans CEO Tom Harley said: “Our football club has standards of behaviour that we expect all our people to live up to. This behaviour has fallen short of those standards, which is disappointing, and we are supportive of the AFL sanctions as we believe they are appropriate.

“All Sydney Swans players are educated about the impacts of drug use, so to have players in this position is also disappointing from a health and wellbeing perspective.

“Both Lexi and Paige understand their position as role models in the community. They have both cooperated fully with the club and the AFL throughout this matter and have shown contrition through their actions. We are working with both from a welfare and education perspective to ensure they receive the necessary support.”

The AFL's current policy, which Western Bulldogs coach Luke Beveridge believes “none of us really feel it works," is a three-strike approach to offences and reportedly doesn't apply to the women's league.

“Ultimately the clubs, the people, the constituents at the football clubs are here to help and support our players,” Beveridge said in 2022, following midfielder Bailey Smith's involvement with illicit substances.

“And essentially any player with a clinically diagnosed mental health challenge will never be exposed to the policy anyway.”

The three-strike policy is:

  • The first positive test results in a suspended $5000 fine
  • The second positive test results in a four-match ban and $5000 fine, and outed publicly
  • The third positive test results in a 12-month suspension and a $10,000 fine.

Former Hawthorn player and son of Michael Tuck, Travis, is the only player to be banned for 12 months, back in 2010.