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I had done nothing wrong: Dumont's relief after two-year legal battle

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MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - DECEMBER 12: Trent Dumont of the Kangaroos during the North Melbourne Kangaroos training session at Arden Street in Melbourne, Australia on December 12, 2016. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)
Trent Dumont is fully focused on footy again after a two-year legal battle
I didn't do anything wrong and that's why I was confident
Trent Dumont

IT WAS a cab ride that would haunt North Melbourne midfielder Trent Dumont for more than two years.

A boozy night out with a mate in Adelaide in October 2014 led to a protracted legal ordeal that finally ended in court last month.

Prosecutors dropped charges of aggravated burglary against Dumont and his friend Joshua Lomas, after evidence from the cab driver didn't match CCTV footage.

Speaking exclusively to AFL.com.au, Dumont said he always believed he'd be cleared.

"Obviously had to respect the process, but (I'm) relieved the right outcome's happened and I can focus on footy," the 21-year-old said. 

Having returned from a holiday in Bali, Dumont said he was surprised to learn he was the subject of a Crimestoppers call-out less than a month after the incident. 

He turned himself in to police but throughout it all protested his innocence. 

"It was a surprise, I'd come back from my holiday … a couple of weeks later it came to light," he said.

The cab driver made some serious accusations, including that he'd been pinned down and robbed by the pair.

Dumont and Lomas argued the driver had taken them the wrong way and they were trying to retrieve their $70 pre-paid fare. 

While the driver alleged he had been robbed by the pair, his version of events wasn't backed up by CCTV.

"The prosecution knew two years ago ... there was always a gap in the evidence," Dumont's lawyer Tony Burns told the court.

"It's scandalous really that it got this far." 

Still, South Australian officials had pressed ahead with the charges, asking for multiple adjournments as they prepped their witness. 

"I didn't do anything wrong and that's why I was confident," Dumont said. 

And Justice Paul Muscat agreed, saying it was the "right decision" when prosecutors dropped the charges, but declaring it had come "about two years too late." 

The damage to Dumont's reputation was tough to handle as he copped grief on social media. 

"Obviously they're misinformed, and they weren't there, and they don't understand what's going on with the process and stuff," he said. 

"So they can say what they want to say, but at the end of the day I knew within myself that I had done nothing wrong.

Now, Dumont can turn his full attention to football as he looks to earn a contract extension beyond this season,

"It's a big relief, more so for my family as well, which makes me happy," he said.

"I feel like my bond with the club's become stronger because they've been there from the start and they've backed me from the start.

"Obviously it's not one of those things you want hanging over your head. 

"As much as you say you don't want people judging you ... it's good that it's gone and I can concentrate on footy."