x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 23 January 2018

Jordan Paralympic team weightlifters accused of sex assault

Three men linked to Jordan's Paralympic weightlifting team were arrested in Northern Ireland following allegations of indecent assault, British media reported.

Three members of Jordan’s Paralympic weightlifting squad appeared in court in Northern Ireland yesterday accused of sexual assault.

Faisal Hammash, 35, a trainer, faces two charges of causing a child to engage in sexual activity.

Omar Sami Qaradhi, 31, a wheelchair-using weightlifter, is charged with three counts of sexual assault and one of voyeurism.

Motaz Al Junadi, 45, also a wheelchair-using weightlifter, faces one charge of sexual assault.

All the offences were said to have taken place between August 16 and 20, and the three men were arrested on Monday night after two girls and two women made allegations of indecent assault.

A representative from the Jordanian embassy in London gave evidence at Coleraine Magistrates’ Court and provided an assurance that the three men would return to Northern Ireland for trial if released on bail.

The hearing was adjourned briefly while the judge considered the bail applications, and bail of £500 (Dh2,900) was granted with a surety of £5,000 from the Jordanian government for each of the three accused.

Jordan has sent a 19-strong delegation to the Paralympics. Its squad is one of several international teams using the Antrim Forum sports complex, about 35 kilometres north of Belfast, as a training base.