Two Olympic Boxers Are Sitting In Rio Jails For Allegedly Sexually Assaulting Housekeepers
As the Summer Olympics kicked off over the weekend in Rio de Janeiro, two Olympic boxers were arrested for allegedly sexually assaulting housekeepers in the Olympic Village where all the athletes and coaches are staying. Last week, Moroccan boxer Hassan Saada, 22, was accused of acting inappropriately by two maids and is currently in a Rio jail. Then on Monday, Namibian boxer Jonas Junius, also 22, was arrested after a maid reported that he grabbed her, forcefully kissed her, and offered her money to sleep with him. Junius, who was Namibia’s flag bearer during the opening ceremony Friday, is expected to be transferred to the same prison facility Saada is in. Neither of the men have given statements about the allegations.
Two Brazilian housekeepers accused Saada of calling them to his room Wednesday, restraining them, and fondling them, chief investigator Carolina Salomao told the Associated Press. “They were cleaning the room right across his, and he assaulted them. He groped the breast of one of them and touched the other woman’s thigh. They were able to get out,” Salomao told reporters in Rio. Saada will be in custody for 15 days while the local police investigate, though it’s unclear exactly what charges he faces.
“Brazilian law needs to be respected and this is something that we have to agree on,” Mario Andrada, spokesman for the Rio 2016 Organizing Committee, told USA Today. “What we need to do is make sure that all the legal procedures are being followed and we understand that they have.”
Men’s boxing matches have already started, and Junius is scheduled to compete against France’s Hassan Amzile in the men’s light welter 64 kg category Thursday, which he obviously won’t be able to do if he’s still in jail. Saada missed a fight Saturday against Turkey’s Mehmet Nadir Unal while he was sitting behind bars.
Judge Larissa Nunes Saly ordered for Saada to be arrested Thursday, saying in a statement: “It is unbelievable that an athlete who should be coming to a country to participate in the Olympic spirit has total disrespect for those who welcome him, committing grave acts that would be repudiated in any part of the world.”
Saada and Junius can ponder how they threw away their chances to compete in the Olympics and what does and doesn’t constitute consensual sexual activity from the Rio jail. Perhaps athletes should attend a How to Not Sexually Assault Women at the Olympics class before traveling across the world for the games.