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Several Gee Gees players look to sue uOttawa

Several members of the Gee Gees varsity men's hockey team are considering suing the University of Ottawa over its decision to suspect their team for the upcoming season.

The university announced the decision Wednesday, saying an internal review found there was misconduct during a February trip to Thunder Bay. Police there are in the midst of an investigation into an allegation of sexual assault involving at least two team members.

The players not implicated in the investigation have hired lawyer Lawrence Greenspon in the hopes of launching a civil defamation suit.

Greenspon said the player's good names have been tarnished, their academics have suffered and their careers put on hold - or - worse brought to an abrupt end thanks to the decision.

"You can't continue to punish them this way," he said. "It's just completely improper. It violates any rights to individuals to be presumed innocent. The supposed perpetrators haven't even been charged by the police."

Greenspon told CFRA he did not understand University of Ottawa President Allan Rock's decision to punish the entire team for the actions of a few.

"He's a former Minister of Justice in the Government of Canada," said Greenspon. "For him not to get the notion that suspending innocent people from their heart and soul, their career, on the basis of allegations against other individuals, to not see the unfairness of this, it just boggles my mind."

Greenspon said Rock should have waited for the police to finish their investigation before making this decision.

Sources told CFRA several players have approached other universities in the hopes of playing hockey this year. In recent weeks one of the team's goaltenders left to play pro in Australia.

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