On social networks, the French international footballer is accused by some Marseille supporters of having “supported” his father-in-law, convicted in 2021 of sexual assault. The father-in-law’s lawyer and the victim’s lawyer respond to the Figaro.
On the verge of signing at Olympique de Marseille, from AS Roma, football player Jordan Veretout finds himself at the heart of a lively controversy born on social networks. In question, a court case – judged in May 2021 -, which concerns his in-laws.
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On August 2, an anonymous Twitter account, posing as that of a Marseille supporter, posted a post entitled “Important: the truth about the Veretout family“, accompanied by the hashtag”VeretoutNotWelcometo oppose the player’s arrival at OM.
“Sabrina Veretout, wife of Jordan Veretout, as well as all her sisters have denied their little sister because she filed a complaint against her father when he raped her (…) It should be noted that Jordan Veretout paid for the his wife’s father, at Sabrina’s request, avoids prison. In fact, instead of doing the required 4 years, he only did 2 years. Jordan pays his lawyer and therefore indirectly endorses what his wife’s father did“, indicates the publication. A tissue of defamatory accusations yet relayed by many OM fans, with a hashtag that emerges: “VeretoutNotWelcome“.
Faced with the controversy, the president of the club, Pablo Longoria, is questioned on the subject during a press conference, Wednesday August 3. “I ask a question: is he condemned? (…) A rumor, that’s a reflex of current life. Social networks, someone puts a thing, everyone must follow. Popularly judging someone for a guess, is that morally acceptable?“Questions the president of OM.
The player’s father-in-law sentenced in May 2021
Jordan Veretout’s stepfather was actually sentenced by the courts in May 2021 for a sexual assault on one of his daughters. Then 75 years old, he received two years in prison from the Saint-Nazaire Criminal Court, while the public prosecutor had requested four years in prison. The sentence of the septuagenarian has been adjusted. In French law, when a sentence is less than or equal to two years, it can be adjusted if the situation and the personality of the convicted person allow it. This is the usual operation of justice. The anonymous supporter’s allegation that Jordan Veretout paid “so that his wife’s father avoids prisonis completely unfounded.
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The charges against the stepfather date back to July 2017 when the complainant, one of his daughters, was a minor. An article from Mail from the Pays de Retz recounts the trial. “On July 31, 2017, in Préfailles (Loire-Atlantique), in the middle of the night, while she was sleeping in the motorhome with her father, and her brother was in the kitchen area, the young girl came out crying. She calls her mother, one of her sisters: “He touched me again”», recounts the article. She also denounces other touching that would have started since she was 13 years old.
From then on, this family of Portuguese origin was torn apart. First believed, the young girl is finally rejected by the whole family, including the wife of Jordan Veretout (who is one of his sisters, editor’s note), who takes up the cause of the father. The young girl is kicked out and family ties are completely broken.
I got paid by my client’s daughters
Me Joseph Cohen-Sabban, lawyer for the father-in-law sentenced in May 2021
Lamenting “a hateful controversy“, the father-in-law’s lawyer, Me Joseph Cohen-Sabban, recalls that Jordan Veretout “has never been directly or indirectly involved in this affair“. The name of the player does not appear at any time in this file which concerns his in-laws and whose facts date back to 2017.I never met him and I never spoke to him. I was paid by my client’s daughters, who supported their father from start to finish“, also assures Me Joseph Cohen-Sabban to the Figaro. Me Marie-Cécile Nathan, former collaborator of Me Joseph Cohen-Sabban and lawyer for the father-in-law during the May 2021 trial, tells us for her part that she has “no statement to make on this case“.
There is therefore no tangible element to confirm that Jordan Veretout would have paid his father-in-law’s lawyers, as indicated by the publication of the anonymous supporter which has gone viral. Even if he did, that doesn’t mean he “endorses” what his wife’s father did. In France, recourse to and assistance from a lawyer in legal proceedings constitute a constitutional right.
Joined by Le FigaroMe Pierre Huriet, the lawyer for the sexually assaulted girl, explains to us that “his client does not want to be involved in this story“. “We discover this controversy. My client has nothing to contribute. The facts were established concerning her father and she was recognized as a victim. She wants to be quiet and rebuild herself. She never knew directly or indirectly who paid her father’s lawyers, she’s not interested“, concludes the lawyer.
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