|Five of the nine new charges against disgraced coach Graham James former NHLer Theoren Fleury is named as a victim. (Craig Robertson/QMI Agency)
Disgraced former hockey coach Graham James is facing nine new sexual assault charges from three alleged victims, including former Flame Theoren Fleury.
The charges were filed in Winnipeg provincial court on Wednesday and cover a long span dating from 1979 to 1994 and include allegations of repeated sexual assault, gross indecency and buggery.
James’ lawyer Evan Roitenberg wouldn’t comment on the convicted sex offender’s whereabouts but said he would cooperate with the investigation.
“I’ve long expected at some point they would want to meet with him at the very least,” he said.
“Mr. James has always maintained he would be cooperative with Winnipeg police.”
Two of the victims are subject to publication bans and cannot be named but the alleged offences against them took place in Winnipeg and Swift Current between the late ’70s and the mid ’90s.
The five charges where Fleury is named as the alleged victim range from 1983 to 1985 in both Moose Jaw, Sask. and Winnipeg.
Cops have been investigating new charges of sexual abuse, including allegations made by former Flames sniper Theoren Fleury in January following the release of his book Playing With Fire.
Alleged victims in Calgary and Manitoba came forward with complaints about James while a former Calgary Hitmen player was also considering contacting cops.
In a press release, Winnipeg cops confirmed a Canada-wide warrant had been issued for James “into complaints of historic sexual assault,” but they wouldn’t comment any further due to the publication ban.
Earlier this year, Canadian media outlets traced James to Mexico, where he was living and working.
James served three and a half years in jail after pleading guilty in 1997 to sexual assault against former Flame Sheldon Kennedy and another unnamed player.
Roitenberg declined to comment on the charges but said his client appreciates that investigators are taking their time to ensure
“Mr. James has gone through this before unfortunately,” he said.
“I think we’re quite happy that they’re actually taking the time to look at this rather than just reacting.”
According to the RCMP-Interpol website, Canada has an extradition agreement with Mexico, should that step need to be taken.