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Charges against Mike Richards stayed by judge: report

Capitals forward 'gratified' prosecution has been discontinued @NHLdotcom

Charges against Washington Capitals center Mike Richards have been stayed by a judge in a Manitoba court, CBC reported Wednesday.

By staying the charges, the prosecution against Richards has been discontinued, as opposed to being withdrawn. Stayed charges can be brought back within one year, though the likelihood of that is rare, according to the report.

Richards' attorney, David Humphrey, and agent, Pat Morris, went a step further in a statement saying the court decision ends the prosecution, CSN Mid-Atlantic reported.

"Mr. Richards is gratified that the Crown fairly reviewed the case and reasonably recognized that prosecution was not warranted," the statement read in part. "Mr. Richards is now entirely focused on his hockey career and he and his legal counsel will not be commenting further on the successful resolution of this charge."

Richards, 31, was arrested last summer in Manitoba and charged with possession of a controlled substance after being stopped by authorities at the Canada-U.S. border.

His contract with the Los Angeles Kings was terminated by the team for "material breach of the requirements," but the NHL Players' Association filed a grievance on Richards' behalf and reached a settlement with the Kings.

He was then cleared to return to the League, and agreed to terms with Washington on Jan. 6.

Richards, who won the Stanley Cup twice with the Kings, has one goal in 15 games with the Capitals.

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