Five accused 2018 WJC players choose trial by jury

A stack of hockey pucks is set on a bench. (Joseph Weiser/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The five former Canadian world junior hockey players accused of sexually assaulting a woman in a hotel room have chosen to have a trial by jury, the Globe and Mail reported Wednesday.

The Globe’s Robyn Doolittle reported that the players will be tried as a group and were granted their request for a jury trial during a court appearance Tuesday in London, Ont. It’s not clear whether the court appearance was via video conferencing or in person. In the first court appearance in this case, on Feb. 5, none of the five players appeared in person or virtually; their lawyers all appeared virtually.

“Earlier this week, all five players selected a trial by jury and they are confident that jurors drawn from the community will decide this case fairly and impartially after hearing all the evidence and testimony,” lawyers representing the accused said in a statement provided to Sportsnet.

In late January, London police charged NHL players Michael McLeod, Dillon Dubé, Carter Hart, Cal Foote and former NHLer Alex Formenton with sexual assault. Through their lawyers, each has denied the accusations, although no pleas have yet been entered in court.

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