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By ESPN Staff

Caley Thistle star suspended after cocaine shame

Inverness Caledonian Thistle have suspended midfielder Richie Hart after he admitted cocaine possession.

The 29-year-old was fined £300 by Inverness Sheriff Court yesterday, having been found with the Class A drug at the Rock Ness music festival in June.

Hart, who joined Inverness in 2002, will now await the club's next stage of action.

Caley Thistle have announced they will deal with the former Ross County player's case internally.

In a statement, the club announced: 'Inverness Caledonian Thistle FC can confirm that following Richard Hart pleading guilty to a criminal offence concerning a controlled substance, Mr Hart has been suspended from training and playing with the club until further notice.

'When the matter was originally brought to our attention, the club interviewed the player and given his responses agreed to leave the matter until the allegations were addressed in court.

'The club would like to reassure the club's commercial partners, supporters and the public that the club adopts a very firm stance in relation to the use and/or possession of drugs.

'The club will deal with the matter internally and will make no further comment until the position has been resolved.'

Hart's only first-team appearance during this campaign was as a substitute in the opening-day defeat to Rangers on August 4.

A foot injury kept him sidelined, but Hart recovered to make himself available to manager Craig Brewster and featured for the Inverness reserves last week.