NHL defenseman Victor Mete said he was not involved in an alleged sexual assault involving members of the 2018 Canada junior ice hockey team.
Mete was a member of the Canada team that won gold at the Men’s World Junior Ice Hockey Championships in January 2018 in Buffalo, NY. He was loaned to the national team by the Montreal Canadiens for the December 2017 tournament.
Hockey Canada last month quietly settled a lawsuit after a woman, now 24, claimed she was assaulted by eight hockey players, including members of the junior national team, at a gala and golf event in London, Ontario in June 2018 .
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“I believe it is important for me to say that I was not present at the gala when this horrifying event occurred,” Mete said in a statement posted to Twitter on Thursday. “I was on vacation in Jamaica with family and friends at the time and only recently found out about the situation through media reports.
“I am deeply disturbed by the reports of this incident and should my assistance be requested by investigators into this matter, I will cooperate in any way I can.”
None of the allegations were proven in court.
Mete played the last two seasons with the Ottawa Senators who stripped him of the Canadians during the 2020-21 season.
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Hockey Canada executives were grilled by lawmakers on Parliament Hill last week during a meeting of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage that was considering the matter.
The national sporting body has lost its government funding and several key sponsors over its handling of the case.
Tim Hortons said on Wednesday it was “suspending” support for the upcoming World Junior Hockey Championships this summer as the restaurant chain awaits details on how Hockey Canada intends to take “strong and definitive action” following the “deeply worrying allegations.” to take.
Imperial Oil, the main sponsor of Canada’s Under-18 Women’s Ice Hockey Club Championship under its Esso brand, also announced Wednesday that it is withdrawing its sponsorship from the World Junior Championship while continuing to sponsor youth and women’s programs.
CONTINUE READING: Scotiabank suspends sponsorship of Hockey Canada amid outcry over alleged sexual assault
Scotiabank, Canadian Tire and Telus all suspended Hockey Canada sponsorships on Tuesday until the companies are confident the right steps are being taken to improve the culture of the sport.
Bauer, a hockey equipment manufacturer that is one of Hockey Canada’s key partners, issued a statement Thursday saying the allegations are “extremely disturbing” and that the company is closely monitoring the facts of the situation to determine next steps for to establish its partnership with the national sports organization.
“We have recently observed troubling situations in a number of communities across Canada, particularly for girls,” said Mary-Kay Messier, vice president of global marketing at Bauer Hockey, in a statement. “Current systems and policies are failing underrepresented families.”
This report from The Canadian Press was first published on June 30, 2022.
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https://globalnews.ca/news/8959103/nhl-victor-mete-sexual-assault-2018/ NHL’s Victor Mete Denies Involvement in 2018 Sexual Assault Allegations – National