Second lawsuit alleging sexual abuse by John Furlong coming apart at seams

The Province


A second lawsuit alleging that former Vancouver Olympic Games CEO John Furlong sexually abused elementary school students more than 40 years ago appears to be in jeopardy.

In December, a First Nations woman named Beverly Abraham withdrew her claims that Furlong had abused her while she was a young student and he was a teacher at Immaculata Roman Catholic elementary school in Burns Lake, in 1969 and 1970.

On Thursday, lawyers for Furlong applied in court to throw out the lawsuit of a second claimant, Grace Jessie West.

“The evidence seems fairly clear that Ms. West was not even at the school Mr. Furlong was teaching at, at the relevant time,” Vancouver lawyer John Hunter told B.C. Supreme Court Justice Miriam Gropper.

Hunter said there was no explanation for how West, who was not in court Tuesday, could have arrived at her allegations.

He said there was evidence that West, 54, attended a school in Smithers at the time, but no evidence she attended the Catholic school in Burns Lake where Furlong taught.

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