Sailing coach charged in first MeToo lawsuit Greek sports world

In Athens, a lawsuit has begun against a sailing coach accused of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old student. The now 22-year-old woman decided to bring the case after contact with top sailor Sofia Bekatorou. She revealed about a year ago that she was abused in 1998 by a senior official at the Greek Sailing Association.

The revelations of Bekatorou, the 2004 Olympic champion in the 470 class, led to a lot of stir and the emergence of a MeToo movement in the Greek sports world. Since then, many more women have made similar experiences public in all walks of life. This is the first lawsuit.

Stricter penalties

Bekatorou, following the consent of the 22-year-old woman, brought the case to the attention of a prosecutor who had initiated an investigation into sexual abuse by sports officials. The victim says her sailor, when she was 11 years old, sexually abused her several times and also used psychological violence so that she did not dare tell her parents. The 38-year-old suspect contradicts all charges.

Meanwhile, the Greek government has introduced stricter penalties for sexual abuse and extended the limitation period of abuse against minors. Victims can also now contact a website and helpline.