— Published 15 February 2023

The CAS lifts the suspension imposed on Yves Jean-Bart

Parenthese closed. The Court of Arbitration for Sport (CAS) announced in a press release on Tuesday, February 14, that it had annulled the life suspension imposed by FIFA on the former president of the Haitian Football Federation, Yves Jean-Bart (photo above). Reason given: a lack of sufficient evidence on the allegations of rape of players. The former leader had been accused of sexual harassment and assault in 2020, following an investigation by the Guardian citing numerous testimonies of female players, some of whom were minors at the time of the events. FIFA took up the case. In November 2020, the judging chamber of the body had found Yves Jean-Bart, then aged 73, guilty of “abusing his position to sexually harass and assault several players, including minors.” He was suspended for life from all football-related activities, both nationally and internationally, and ordered to pay a fine of 1 million Swiss francs. Denouncing a “parody of justice and a purely political measure“, the Haitian leader appealed to CAS. A step that paid off. The court based in Lausanne explains that the evidence brought against Yves Jean-Bart is “inconsistent, imprecise and contradictory.” It notes “the lack of coherence and imprecision in the statements of the victims and witnesses presented by FIFA.” Finally, CAS considers that the indications contained in the documents provided by third-party organizations, such as HRW and FIFPro, are not “sufficiently conclusive.”