Friday saw the publication of an article by journalist Romain Molina, in which he makes allegations that the French Football Federation has covered up multiple instances of sexual assault, particularly of children and young adults.
Romain Molina is a journalist who is well-known in the world of football for his investigations. On Friday morning, he published an investigation into the French Football Federation on the website Josimar. The inquiry was titled “40 years of quiet.” According to the paper, several high-ranking personnel at the FFF, including Noel Le Grat, would have been “covered in multiple sexual assault instances, including abuse of minor athletes.” This includes abuse of players who were younger than 18.
Even though the FFF would have been aware of many incidents, Romain Molina asserts that the authorities were only notified once by the FFF. He discloses a letter that was dated October 30, 2013 and was signed by Nol Le Grat. In the letter, the president of the FFF informs the public prosecutor of his decision to fire Angélique Roujas, who was a coach at the national women’s center in Clairefontaine at the time and who would have sexually abused several underage players. It is stated about Angélique Roujas that while she was in charge of the U19 team at ESOF La Roche, a club in the second division, she continued to work with other young players in France. “However, she continued to work with other young players in France.”
Read more about football here: the Ministry of Sports has launched an investigation following several incidents within the French Football Federation.
According to the findings of the study, the FFF would have been able to uncover countless instances of sexual assault had it conducted investigations within the organization; nevertheless, the material was not brought to light. There is a mention of Brigitte Henriques, who served as an executive for the FFF between the years 2011 and 2021 before becoming the current president of the CNOSF. She would have put an end to staff’s concerns about the way the FFF was treating the complaints by keeping their mouths shut.
“All of the politicians mentioned confirmed to us that they had not been alerted to these cases,” says Romain Molina. “This includes former Sports Ministers Najat Vallaud-Belkacem and Valérie Fourneyron, former Secretary of State for Sports Thierry Braillard, and former Sports Advisors to the President in office at the time, Thierry Rey and Nathalie Iannetta.” He also recalls that “according to French legislation, […] failing to alert the police of a crime you observe can be punished by three years in prison and a fine of 45,000 euros,” and that this is the sentence that can be handed down.