Former Canadian World Junior Player Alex Formenton Charged By Police In London, Ont., Lawyer Says | CBC News


Alex Formenton, a former Canadian world junior hockey player and ex-member of the Ottawa Senators who currently plays in Switzerland, is facing charges in London, Ont., his lawyer said Sunday.

5 members of 2018 Canadian team expected to face charges related to alleged sexual assault: reportThe Canadian Press

· Posted: Jan 28, 2024 2:14 PM EST | Last Updated: January 29

Former Canadian world junior hockey player charged in London, Ont.Former Canadian world junior hockey player Alex Formenton was charged by police in London, Ont., along with other junior players in connection with a sexual assault accusation from 2018, his lawyer said, without giving any details on the charges.

Alex Formenton, a former Canadian world junior hockey player and ex-member of the Ottawa Senators who currently plays in Switzerland, is facing charges in London, Ont., his lawyer said Sunday.

Formenton made no comment as he arrived at London police headquarters late Sunday morning with his lawyers, Daniel Brown and Lindsay Board.

“The London Police have charged several players, including Alex Formenton, in connection with an accusation made in 2018,” Brown, who is lead counsel, said in an email.

“Alex will vigorously defend his innocence and asks that people not rush to judgment without hearing all of the evidence.”

It follows a report from The Globe and Mail last week, citing two unnamed sources, that charges are connected to an alleged group sexual assault of a woman in a London, Ont., hotel room in 2018.

None of the allegations have been proven in court, and CBC News has not independently verified The Globe and Mail’s reporting.

Several players from the 2018 World Junior team requested and were granted leaves of absences this week from NHL and European teams. London Police have not named any accused.

“We will provide all updates at our press conference scheduled for February 5, 2024,” London Police spokesperson Matthew Dawson said Sunday in an email.

A message left with Formenton’s agent was not immediately returned.

Formenton, then playing for the Ottawa Senators, is shown during a faceoff against the Vegas Golden Knights at T-Mobile Arena in Nevada on March 6, 2022. (Stephen R. Sylvanie/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters)The incident is alleged to have occurred following a Hockey Canada gala in London in June 2018 where the players were honoured for their victory at that year’s world junior tournament.

Court documents from 2022 revealed that London police believed they had reasonable grounds to accuse five players of sexually assaulting a young woman in a hotel room.

London police closed the case in 2018, then re-opened it in 2022 in response to public outrage following a lawsuit.

The alleged victim, known only as “E.M.” in court documents, sued eight unnamed players, Hockey Canada and the Canadian Hockey League for more than $3.5 million. Hockey Canada settled that lawsuit.

Subsequent revelations that the national organization maintained a fund drawing on minor hockey fees to pay for uninsured liabilities, including lawsuits related to sexual assaults, sparked an unprecedented backlash against the sport’s governing body.

Hockey Canada’s governance and transparency were subsequently called into question, leading to a series of parliamentary hearings.

A Hockey Canada official told a parliamentary committee during one of its 2022 hearings that the organization had paid out $7.6 million in nine settlements related to sexual abuse and assault since 1989, not including the London incident.

For anyone who has been sexually assaulted, there is support available through crisis lines and local support services via this Government of Canada website or the Ending Violence Association of Canada database. ​​If you’re in immediate danger or fear for your safety or that of others around you, please call 911.

WATCH | Lawyer discusses former junior hockey players facing charges:

London lawyer Nick Cake on former junior hockey players facing chargesLondon criminal defence lawyer Nick Cake joined CBC London Morning to talk about the situation involving former junior hockey players who are reportedly surrendering to face charges in a 2018 alleged sexual assault.

With files from CBC’s Ashley Burke

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