By Sky Sports News
Ben Stokes has been charged with affray following an incident outside a Bristol nightclub in September and will appear before Bristol Magistrates’ Court at a later date.
The England international was arrested on September 25 and has now been charged along with Ryan Ali, 28, and Ryan Hale, 26.
The charge comes after Avon & Somerset Police, who had submitted a file in late November, passed on further material in December.
A Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) spokesperson said: “The CPS was passed a file of evidence by Avon & Somerset Police on 29 November 2017 in relation to an incident of disorder in Bristol city centre.
“Further material was subsequently received in late December. Following a review of all the available evidence, the CPS has today (Mon 15 Jan) authorised the police to charge three men with affray in connection with the incident.
“Ben Stokes, 26, Ryan Ali, 28, and Ryan Hale, 26, are all due to appear before Bristol Magistrates’ Court on a date to be fixed in relation to this charge.”
Stokes, who was initially named in England’s Ashes squad, missed the tour after being suspended from playing for England by the ECB.
An ECB spokesperson said: “ECB is aware that Ben Stokes has been charged with affray in relation to an incident in Bristol in September.
“The Board will now convene within 48 hours to decide on Ben Stokes’ availability to represent England at this stage. A further announcement will be made in due course.”
Affray is a triable either-way charge, which means the case can be heard in either the magistrates’ court or the crown court.
It carries a maximum penalty when tried summarily – in the magistrates’ court – of a fine or up to six months in prison, and when tried on indictment – in the crown court – of up to three years in prison.
In December, Stokes was given approval to travel to New Zealand where he played six matches for Canterbury Kings and visited his extended family.
The Durham all-rounder has been included in England’s Test squad for the tour of New Zealand as well as the T20 squad for the tri-series against Australia and New Zealand.
Stokes has also made himself available to play in this year’s Indian Premier League after the ECB had given him permission to do so.