4 NHL players were sexually assaulted in a 2018 case in Canada

NHL players Carter Hart Cal Foot of the Philadelphia Flyers, Michael McLeod and the New Jersey Devils and Dillon Dube Calgary Flames accused of sexual assault In relation to the alleged attack By many Members of Canada's 2018 World Junior Team.

Lawyers representing Hart, McLeod, Foote and Dube said Tuesday that each player has been charged with sexual assault in London, Ontario. They denied any wrongdoing on behalf of their clients.

Hart's attorneys, Megan Savard and Riyas Sayani, said their client had been sexually assaulted, adding that “he is innocent and will give a full answer to this false accusation in the proper forum, a court of law.”

Legal teams representing McLeod and Dube said the players would plead not guilty.

“(We) will vigorously defend the case,” McLeod's attorneys, David Humphrey and Seth Weinstein, said in a statement. “We ask that the public respect Mr. McLeod's privacy and the privacy of his family. As this matter is before the courts, we will not be commenting at this time,” he said.

FILE – Calgary Flames center Dillon Dube (29) skates against the Detroit Red Wings during the first period of an NHL hockey game Sunday, Oct. 22, 2023, in Detroit. Michael McLeod of the NHL's New Jersey Devils and Tubb of the Flames have been charged in connection with an investigation into alleged sexual assault by several members of Canada's 2018 World Junior team. Lawyers for each player say they will not plead guilty in London, Ontario. (AP Photo/Paul Sancia, File)

Dube's attorneys, Louis Strezos and Kaylee Davidson, said their client “maintains his innocence (and) will defend the charges in court.”

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Foote's attorney, Julianna Greenspan, said her client “is innocent of the charges and will defend himself against this charge to clear his name.”

“The most important thing at this time is the presumption of innocence and the right to a fair trial for everyone in Canada,” Greenspan said in an emailed statement to The Associated Press. “As this matter is before the courts, I ask that the privacy of Cal and his family be respected.”

A Devils spokesman said the organization is aware of the reports and has been told to refer all inquiries to the league. A Flyers spokesman echoed a similar sentiment, saying the team “will respond appropriately to this very serious matter when the results of the investigations are made public.”

“We are now aware of the allegations of sexual assault against Dillon Dube,” the Flames said in a statement. “We are taking this matter very seriously and will not comment at this time as the matter is pending legal proceedings.

The NHL is not expected to address the situation on Tuesday. Commissioner Gary Bettman is slated to speak at the league's upcoming All-Star Weekend.

The latest developments in the case come two days after the former NHL player Alex surrendered to Formentano police to face the charges. Prosecutor Daniel Brown said Formenton is innocent “and asks people not to rush to judgment without hearing all the evidence.”

All five players have been on leave from their current clubs for the past 10 days. Their agents have not spoken publicly since then.

London police are planning a news conference on Monday to address the situation. A police spokeswoman told the AP by email that no updates on the investigation would be provided before the news conference.

London police have launched an investigation After it was revealed in 2022 Hockey Canada settles in A woman is suing after eight members of the gold-medal winning team sexually assaulted her after a Hockey Canada Foundation fundraiser. London is roughly halfway between Toronto and Detroit.

According to court documents, the woman, then 20, alleged that a man identified only as “John Doe #1” led her from a bar to a hotel room, invited seven other people into the room to perform undisclosed sexual acts and threatened her. Prevents her and her from leaving. The woman said the men asked her to take a shower and asked her to say on video that she was sober.

The woman dropped the lawsuit after settling with Hockey Canada for $3.55 million in damages.

The NHL launched its own investigation He promised to make those findings public in 2022. Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said last week that the league would issue a report if deemed appropriate.

Flyers said Hart requested and was granted leave for personal reasons. General manager Daniel Pryor declined to provide details when asked follow-up questions about the 25-year-old No. 1 goaltender's departure.

The Devils did not give a reason when announcing McLeod and Foote were placed on indefinite leave. McLeod, who turns 26 on Saturday, is in the midst of his fourth full season with the team, while Foote — the son of former NHLer Adam Foote — spent most of this season in the American Hockey League and appeared in four games for New. Jersey.

Dube said the flames He was on indefinite leave to protect his mental health. As part of their statement Tuesday, they said they were “not aware of any pending charges at the time Dillon's request for leave was granted.”

Dube, 25, has been playing for Calgary since 2018.

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