Joel Smith in action for Melbourne against Collingwood in round 13, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos

THE FOOTBALLING future of suspended Melbourne forward Joel Smith is even more clouded after the AFL revealed he is under investigation over more anti-doping rule violations by Sport Integrity Australia.

Smith has been provisionally suspended since mid-October after he returned a positive in-competition test for cocaine after the Demons' round 23 win over Hawthorn on August 20 last year.

However, Sport Integrity Australia has asserted three anti-doping violations for trafficking or attempted trafficking of cocaine against him.

He also faces an additional rule violation for possession of cocaine on September 9, 2022. 

Joel Smith handballs during a Melbourne training session on March 21, 2023. Picture: AFL Photos/Getty Images

In a statement released on Tuesday night, the AFL said the four additional violations would be investigated by Sport Integrity Australia, and "may ultimately be heard by an AFL Anti-Doping Tribunal in the coming months".

Smith, who turns 28 next week, will remain provisionally suspended until all the rule violations – including his initial positive test – have been finalised.

The forward has not been part of Melbourne's football program since mid-October last year and will stay away from the club.

Smith enjoyed his best season at AFL level in 2023, playing 14 games as a versatile tall in attack and defence. He kicked 11 goals, including three in the narrow semi-final loss to Carlton.

He has played 42 senior games across eight seasons at AFL level. He is the son of former Melbourne and North Melbourne high-flyer Shaun Smith. 

Under the AFL's Anti-Doping Code, any player who tests positive to a substance of abuse, and can prove that their use of the substance was both out of competition and unrelated to sport performance, faces a three-month ban.

Cocaine is listed as a substance of abuse, rather than a specified substance, under the World Anti-Doping Authority code.

The maximum penalty for the intentional use of a non-specified substance under the AFL's Anti-Doping Code is a four-year ban.