Nathan Broad, an Australian Football League (AFL) player, has apologised for sharing an image of a topless woman without her consent.

The 24-year-old, who plays for the Richmond Tigers in the AFL, admitted to sending the image to his friends, which went viral later. Broad had distributed the image of the woman in which she was only wearing a medallion that the player had received after his team had won the AFL Grand Final in September, the BBC reported.

In a press conference held in Melbourne on Monday (30 October), Broad said that he took "full responsibility" for his actions which had caused the woman a lot of distress. "I sent a very private picture without this young woman's consent. I am ashamed and I am embarrassed and I made a very bad drunken decision.

"Not only have I let down my family, my friends and the Richmond football club, but most of all, I let down a young woman who I cared about," he added.

Broad attended the Monday conference alongside Richmond club President Peggy O'Neal, who said that the player's act had disappointed her and the club. The club has decided to suspend him for three games in next year's season, since the current season has already ended.

O'Neal called his actions "completely unacceptable", The Guardian reported.

Under Victorian law, sharing a person's picture without his/her "express or implied consent" is considered "contrary to community standards of acceptable conduct" and is commonly known as 'revenge porn'. The offence can carry up to two years of prison time.

However, it was reported that Broad is safe from sentencing as an investigation into the case has been dropped at the victim's request.

In a statement issued on Monday, the woman's lawyers said that she did not want to pursue a criminal investigation, but had previously approached police to get the picture deleted from wherever it had been circulated.

The statement added that she had no intention of continuing with the investigation because she wanted to avoid "further attention and distress" and "protect her identity".

"Her main focus has been protecting her privacy, welfare and dignity as she tries to come to terms with what has happened. She is desperate to maintain her anonymity as she tries to get on with her life as best she can," it stated.