Pictured: Girlfriend, 21, beaten and abused by 13-stone Scotland rugby star Rufus McLean during 20-month campaign of domestic abuse

  • Rufus McLean demanded passwords to her socials and kept a ‘tracker’ running
  • The player admitted leaving Cara Haston, 21, with a burst lip and black eye
  • He also called her a b**** and a s*** and sent her abusive text and messages

A Scots rugby international is facing the sack from his club after he admitted domestically abusing his girlfriend during a harrowing 20-month ordeal – as she is pictured for the first time following his guilty plea. 

Glasgow Warriors and Scotland rugby union player Rufus McLean, 22, used tracking systems to keep tabs on the phone of Cara Haston, 21, and demanded the passwords to her social media accounts. 

The 13-stone player admitted leaving his victim, from Edinburgh, with a burst lip and black eye after pushing her off him during one incident. He also called her a b***h and a s*** and sent her abusive text and social media messages, the court heard. 

Following his guilty plea, he was suspended by Glasgow Warriors with immediate affect. The US-born winger, who has been capped three times for Scotland, has had no contact with the club since then, and his career hangs in the balance.

Glasgow Warriors and Scotland rugby union player Rufus McLean, 22, used tracking systems to keep tabs on the phone of Cara Haston (pictured), 21, and demanded the passwords to her social media accounts.

McLean is facing the sack from his club after he admitted domestically abusing his girlfriend during a harrowing 20-month ordeal

A statement issued by Glasgow Warriors said: ‘Rufus McLean is suspended from all club activity and is unavailable for selection following a guilty plea to charges under the Domestic Abuse (Scotland) Act 2018 in December 2022.

‘Glasgow Warriors does not condone abuse of any kind and therefore, along with Scottish Rugby, immediately suspended the player following his plea.

‘An internal investigation has been instigated and a disciplinary hearing will be held this week.’

The club added: ‘Legal proceedings in this matter are not concluded, therefore no further comment will be made at this time.’

McLean, who made his senior Scotland debut in October 2021 against Tonga, appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court yesterday for sentencing, which was deferred for a month. 

He pleaded guilty last month to engaging in a course of ’emotionally abusive and controlling’ behaviour between April 2019 and January 2021.

The court heard previously in an agreed narrative how McLean and his girlfriend were in an ‘on/off’ relationship for four years and together ‘properly’ for two years between April 2019 and May 2021.

Cara, who studied at Northumbria University, described 5ft 10in McLean, of Glasgow, as ’emotionally abusive and controlling’.

The court was told she was on a Spanish holiday in the summer of 2019 when McLean saw a photograph of her on social media and ‘took exception’ to what she was wearing.

McLean messaged to say she looked like a ‘s***’ and told her to change, but his girlfriend refused to do so and went out.

He was said to have then started sending messages to her and her friends using derogatory language.

Cara described 5ft 10in McLean, of Glasgow, as ’emotionally abusive and controlling’ (pictured together) 

Cara (pictured), was often told by McLean to put her ‘tracker’ on her phone on so he could verify where she was 

The court was told Cara (pictured) was on a Spanish holiday in the summer of 2019 when McLean saw a photograph of her on social media and ‘took exception’ to what she was wearing, branding her a s*** 


McLean, who made his senior Scotland debut in October 2021 against Tonga, appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court yesterday (pictured) for sentencing, which was deferred for a month

Iain Smith, defending, asked Sheriff Matthew Auchincloss to consider giving McLean an ‘absolute discharge’ – meaning he would not have a criminal record. (Pictured: Former girlfriend Cara) 

In another incident in January 2021, the couple were in McLean’s Glasgow flat when she woke him up to talk.

McLean reacted by pushing her away, causing her lip to be burst and a black eye to appear, the court heard.

She was left ‘frightened’ by the incident and photographed her injuries to show her mother.

On March 11, 2020, the pair were in Edinburgh when McLean saw a photo on social media of his girlfriend along with a man with whom she had previously gone out on a date, at a time when she and McLean were not in a relationship.

An ‘irate’ McLean was said to have pushed her over and ‘continued to shout at her and she pleaded with him to stop’.

After getting up, the victim was said to have followed him and he ‘grabbed her wrist and pushed her back’.

McLean left and police were alerted to an ‘ongoing domestic incident’.

Officers attended and found the woman crying and suffering from redness to her arm.

He also called her a b**** and a s*** and sent her abusive text and social media messages

Glasgow Warriors and Scotland rugby union player Rufus McLean demanded passwords to her social media accounts and kept a ‘tracker’ service running on her phone so he knew where she was

McLean, who made his senior Scotland debut in October 2021 against Tonga, appeared at Edinburgh Sheriff Court yesterday for sentencing

Iain Smith, defending, asked Sheriff Matthew Auchincloss to consider giving McLean an ‘absolute discharge’ – meaning he would not have a criminal record. 

Mr Smith said a Glasgow Warriors disciplinary hearing was due to take place today and the ‘consequences could be severe’.

Sheriff Auchincloss deferred sentencing until next month to allow a report to be prepared on McLean’s suitability for a project addressing the behaviour of male domestic abusers. 

He said he would consider the imposition of a non-harassment order against McLean at the next hearing.

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