Bitter taste remains for Australian rugby over bugging incident

The Australian rugby union says it is relieved an investigation has confirmed it had no part in the bugging of the All Blacks team hotel ahead of last year's Bledisloe Cup match in Sydney.

Police have charged a man over a listening device, described as similar to that used by law enforcement and spy agencies, which was found inside a chair during a routine security search of the team's meeting room at the Intercontinental Hotel at Double Bay.

The 51-year-old man accused of planting the device is understood to be a security consultant for a company contracted by the All Blacks.

He has been charged with public mischief.

Australian Rugby Union chief executive Bill Pulver said, "the ARU and the Wallabies were never accused of any wrongdoing, however it was still important that this matter reached a conclusion to provide complete reassurance to all fans that the organisation and the team had no part in any of this.

The ARU welcomed the arrest but still felt aggrieved the All Blacks had not alerted police until the day of the game despite having found it in a chair cushion earlier in the week.

"The aspect that still leaves a bitter taste out of this whole affair is that the discovery of the device was reported publicly on game day, when it is understood that the alleged discovery of the device occurred much earlier in the week leading up to the Test match," he said.

"Clearly the media attention which resulted from it was a distraction that neither team needed on the morning of a very important Test match.

"There may be some questions that remain but...(it's) welcome news that an individual has been called to account over this incident," he said.