A Belfast-based ice hockey player has been charged with smuggling drugs into the U.S. Sean McMorrow, a former draft pick of the Buffalo Sabres in the NHL and now of the Belfast Giants, is accused of bringing 100kgs of a "substance containing marijuana" into the U.S. from Canada with intent to sell.

On his Facebook page,  the 28-ear-old says the allegations are "nasty, untrue" and he aims to "clear my family name".

"I am shocked and very upset about this," he told the BBC. "Thanks to everyone for their support and patience for me to clear my name."

A spokesman for the Giants said: "Belfast Giants treats any allegation against its players with the utmost seriousness.

"We are aware that an indictment has been served on Sean McMorrow by a U..S grand jury last week.

"However, we are unable to comment further due to the fact that there is a ongoing police investigation relating to alleged offenses in 2003 in the USA during which time he did not play for the Belfast Giants."

"We are not aware of any allegations against Sean McMorrow during his time as a player for Belfast Giants in Northern Ireland.

"Sean McMorrow has requested to be released from his playing duties with Belfast Giants in order to travel back to North America and deal with these allegations in a personal capacity. He will be flying home to Canada shortly.

McMorrow, who was born in Vancouver, was signed by the Giants in May 2009.