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Three NHL players, accused of rape


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Three Swedish players detained

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story.asp?id=114464

TSN.ca Staff

2/10/2005

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) - Mattias Weinhandl of the New York Islanders scored in a penalty shootout to give Sweden a 3-2 win Thursday night over the Czech Republic in a Sweden Hockey Games match overshadowed by police interrogations of three Swedish players three hours before the opening faceoff.

The trio of players - Kristian Huselius and Andreas Lilja of the Florida Panthers and Henrik Tallinder of the Buffalo Sabres - were detained by police in their downtown hotel for questioning about an alleged crime the night before. They were later released by police. Prosecutor Hakan Aberg said the three were not suspects in the case.

''It felt unreal that they were fetched by the police,'' Swedish Hockey Federation president Michael Englund said.

Huselius, Lilja and Tallinder returned to the their hotel late Thursday, but refused to talk to reporters. The Swedish Hockey Federation has announced a press conference for Friday morning.

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Three Swedish hockey players cleared

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/news_story.asp?ID=114464&hubName=nhl

TSN.ca Staff

2/11/2005

STOCKHOLM (AP) - Police have cleared three members of Sweden's national hockey team who were questioned Thursday about an alleged sexual assault against a 21-year-old woman.

The three players - Kristian Huselius, 26, a Florida Panthers forward; Andreas Lilja, 27, a Panthers defenceman; and Henrik Tallinder, 26, a defenceman with the Buffalo Sabres - announced Friday morning that they were quitting the national team squad in the middle of a tournament.

Their decision came after they were questioned Thursday night about a woman who reported she had been raped at the same hotel the players were staying at in the capital of Stockholm.

Friday afternoon, police said they were no longer investigating the incident.

"We can't find any suspected perpetrators in this case," police spokesman Kjell Lindgren said. However, he added that the decision to end the investigation "does not necessarily mean" that the woman's report was not credible.

"It's like when you have a break-in in your car," Lindgren said. "We just don't have any leads to go on. That doesn't mean there hasn't been a break-in in your car."

There was no immediate comment from the Swedish Hockey Association on whether the three players would rejoin the team for the remainder of the Swedish Hockey Games this weekend in Stockholm.

Michael Englund, the national team's general manager, said at a news conference Friday morning that the three were quitting the squad "because of the turbulence of the last 24 hours, and with regard for what's best for the team".

Because of the police questioning, the three players were forced to miss Sweden's opening game against the Czech Republic, which the Swedes won 3-2 after penalty shots.

Huselius and Tallinder are playing in Sweden's Elite League for Linkoping during the NHL lockout, while Lilja is playing for Mora.

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Why does the police officers response annoy me -- if he got raped would he be saying -- "No big deal-- I mean it's invasive but, you know, these things happen - my butt will heal - no need to find the guy who did it or anything"

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Three NHL players, accused of rape, suspended from Swedish national team

By STEPHAN NASSTROM, AP Sports Writer

February 12, 2005

STOCKHOLM, Sweden (AP) -- Three NHL players, in Europe during the lockout, were suspended on Saturday for the rest of the season by Sweden's ice hockey federation after being accused of rape.

Kristian Huselius and Andreas Lilja of the Florida Panthers, and Buffalo Sabres defenseman Henrik Tallinder reportedly told police they had consensual sex with the 22-year-old woman in their hotel room after meeting her in a bar early Wednesday.

Authorities released the three players after questioning Thursday -- hours before the Swedish national team played the Czech Republic -- and said Friday they didn't have enough evidence to charge them.

``By their actions, these players have damaged Swedish hockey, other players, officials and this girl,'' Swedish Ice Hockey Association chairman Christer Englund said. ``They went out during a national team gathering and they brought the girl to the room. We can't accept what happened.''

After being examined Thursday at the Huddinge University Hospital in Stockholm, the woman told police she had been raped.

The players quit the team Friday morning in the midst of the Sweden Hockey Games, the last event on the European Hockey Tour.

With the NHL shut down by the season-long lockout, Huselius and Tallinder are playing in Sweden's Elite League for Linkoping, while Lilja is playing for Mora. Huselius leads the league in scoring.

Huselius and Tallinder were banned from Linkoping's activities until Monday, when the club's board will meet again to decide if they have a future with the team.

``Until then we'll collect as much information as possible,'' club director Mike Helber said. ``We'll also talk to the players. But it's clear that they have showed bad judgment just by staying out late. What has happened is really, really bad.''

Updated on Saturday, Feb 12, 2005 2:05 pm EST

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