Seaside Volleyball Participant Who Was Imprisoned For Rape Qualifies For Paris Olympics

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THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) — A Dutch seashore volleyball participant convicted and imprisoned eight years in the past for raping an underage woman in Britain has certified for the Paris Olympics.

Steven van de Velde and companion Matthew Immers have been one among two males’s groups from the Netherlands that certified for the seashore volleyball competitors on the Paris Video games, which open on July 26 within the French capital.

Most seashore pairs qualify for the 24-team Olympic subject by incomes factors on the worldwide tour; Van de Velde and Immers have been eleventh on the factors listing.

“I understand that in the run-up to the biggest sporting event in the world, this can attract the attention of international media,” Van de Velde stated in a press release posted on the web site of the Netherlands Volleyball Federation. “I cannot reverse it, so I will have to bear the consequences. It has been the biggest mistake of my life.”

Van de Velde was sentenced to 4 years in jail in Britain after being convicted in 2016 of getting intercourse with an underage woman he reportedly acquired to know on-line.

Van de Velde was sentenced to 4 years in jail in Britain after being convicted in 2016 of getting intercourse with an underage woman he reportedly acquired to know on-line. He was transferred to the Netherlands underneath a treaty between the nations, and resentenced in response to Dutch regulation.

“After his release, Van de Velde sought and received professional counseling. He has demonstrated to those around him — privately and professionally — self-insight and reflection,” the federation stated.

It added that each the federation and the Netherlands Olympic Committee “rely on the opinions of experts who consider the chance of recidivism nil.”

The Dutch Olympic committee stated Van de Velde, now 29, met the circumstances required to return after a conviction and resumed his profession in 2017 “after an intensive professionally supervised process.”

“Van de Velde now meets all the qualification requirements for the Olympic Games and is therefore part of the team,” the committee stated.

The worldwide volleyball federation stated it “recognizes that this is a highly sensitive matter” however stated staff choice is the duty of the nationwide Olympic committee “while respecting the eligibility criteria.”

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