The Vancouver Police Department has charged former NHL forward Jake Virtanen with one count of sexual assault, stemming from an incident in 2017 while he was playing for the Vancouver Canucks. Virtanen, 25, is currently playing for Spartak in the KHL where he has 16 points in 36 games.
In May of last year, the Canucks placed Virtanen on leave following the original allegations. In July, they bought out the final year of his contract, making him an unrestricted free agent. The team will carry a $500K cap hit next season as a result of the buyout, after carrying $50K this season.
We have been made aware of the charges laid by the Crown against Jake Virtanen. When the allegations first came to our attention, we immediately placed Jake Virtanen on leave. He is no longer a member of the organization.
We have been in contact with the Vancouver Police Department throughout their investigation and will continue to provide support as needed. Our organization is committed to fostering a safe and welcoming environment and will not tolerate sexual misconduct of any kind. We will not be commenting further on this matter.
Virtanen is not currently in custody.