NEWS

John Furlong calls allegations '17 months of living hell'

10/30/2013 11:03 EDT | Updated 01/23/2014 06:58 EST
Former Vancouver Olympics CEO John Furlong says the police have cleared him of allegations of sexual abuse and he is looking forward to confronting his accuser in court.

Furlong made the statement during an interview with CBC News on Wednesday morning.

"It has been 17 months of absolute hell," Fulong said. "You can never imagine what this is like, until you're in it."

Earlier this week, Furlong issued a statement saying that RCMP had told him that they had found no evidence he sexually abused Burns Lake resident Dorothy Abraham while he was a teacher in the northern B.C. community in the late 1960s.

"The RCMP gave me what I've been looking for, for 17 months – my name back."

The RCMP confirmed no charges resulted from the investigation into Abraham's claims, but the file remains open. Abraham has filed a complaint against the RCMP claiming the investigation was biased.

Newspaper lawsuit dropped

Furlong also said he is dropping a lawsuit against the weekly paper that first published the allegations last fall, but that he is still suing the author of the article, Laura Robinson, for defamation.

"I decided it was time to take my life back …and I'm frankly looking forward to confronting Laura Robinson in court."

In the lawsuit he filed against Robinson last fall, he said she "maliciously intended to injure his reputation" with an article published in the Georgia Straight in September 2012.

"I decided it was time to release the Georgia Straight because my argument is with the media," he said.

"My goal now is that no person has to face this – that they can be so summarily trashed without any proof."

After the newspaper published the story, two women — Abraham and Grace West — who claimed to be former students of Furlong's filed lawsuits alleging physical and sexual abuse against Furlong.

Those allegations were denied in statements of defence filed with the court by Furlong in September this year. The same day, a third sex abuse lawsuit was filed in Vancouver by a man also claiming to be a former student of Furlong's.

None of the claims has been proven in court.

Reacting to Furlong's statement Tuesday, Robinson rejected Furlong's suggestion she maliciously intended to injure his reputation.

"Of course there was no 'campaign' – just due diligence," wrote Robinson.

MORE:cbcNews