Disgraced hockey coach Graham James granted day parole

The parole board has granted Graham James day parole, CTV News has learned.

James has faced multiple sex charges involving Western Hockey League players he coached in the early 1990s.

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James served 3 1/2 years in federal prison after he pleaded guilty in 1997 to sex offences against Sheldon Kennedy and two other players. Kennedy, who played for the Broncos at the time of the assaults, went on to play in the National Hockey League.

James sought and received a pardon for those offences in 2007, but was back in court years later when Todd Holt and his cousin, retired Calgary Flames star Theo Fleury, came forward with a new set of allegations.

James pleaded guilty and was initially sentenced to two years in 2012. An Appeal Court increased the sentence to five years, and although he has been eligible for full parole, James had never made an application.

The new charges were laid in May, 2015, following an investigation that began after the RCMP received a complaint in September 2013.

James pleaded guilty the next month, and was sentenced to an additional two years on top of the five-year sentence he had nearly completed serving at the time.

This is a breaking news update, more to come...

With files from The Canadian Press



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