Rape of minors: Nîmes swimmer Yannick Agnel breaks silence and denounces a “biased presentation”

Yannick Agnel on Monday denounced “a partial and biased view of the facts” after the revelation of a second possible case of sexual abuse of a minor targeting the former Olympic swimming champion.

Confirming information from L’Equipe and RTL, the public prosecutor’s office of Mulhouse (Haut-Rhin) announced last week that a second potential victim had been heard in the context of the investigation into “rape and assault of a minor aged 15” directed at the swimmer, now 30 years old.

“Deeply shocked by the media’s handling of this case, Yannick Agnel regrets this partial and biased portrayal of the facts,” he said in a statement issued by his lawyer, Céline Lasek. According to her, the article in L’Equipe shows “that the journalists clearly had access to the current investigation file, from which they do not hesitate to extract selected documents for the sole purpose of a search for sensationalism”.

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On the merits, the swimmer adds that he refuses to “defend himself through the media”. Since the outbreak of the first case in December 2021 and “despite the many inaccuracies and slanders widely disseminated, he has always reserved his explanations for the authorities in charge of the investigations,” the press release said.

A second victim “close to the swimmer’s entourage”.

Questioned by AFP, the Public Prosecutor of the Republic of Mulhouse, Edwige Roux-Morizot, specified on Thursday that the second potential victim was “close to the family entourage of Yannick Agnel”. “The examining magistrate has not questioned Yannick Agnel about the facts put forward by the assistant, he should certainly do so at the beginning of the year,” she added.

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Ms Roux-Morizot had also said she was “deeply shocked” by the publication “of the full contents of certain minutes which derive directly from the judicial information”.

Yannick Agnel holds one of the best records in French swimming: he was a two-time Olympic champion in London in 2012 in the 200m freestyle and the 4x100m relay before being crowned world champion in the two disciplines in 2013.

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