Club to begin inquiry as Leicester three return

Matthew Beard
Saturday 13 March 2004 01:00

Three Leicester City players granted bail by a Spanish judge after being accused of sexual assault arrived back in Britain yesterday.

Paul Dickov, Frank Sinclair and Keith Gillespie, who were released in the early hours after posting bail of almost £200,000, arrived at Luton airport at about 2.45pm, evading a scrum of reporters and photographers. They were released from the Sangonera jail in Murcia at 3am yesterday. They took a budget airline flight from Alicante, before being smuggled out of a side entrance at Luton Airport by arrangement with police.

The players, who have spent a week in jail, were not considered for selection for today's Premier League match against Birmingham City on the orders of the manager, Micky Adams. Six other players who were released by the Spanish authorities last Friday are all available for selection, with the exception of James Scowcroft, who starts a three-match suspension.

The three men will spend the weekend with their families. They are also expected to be interviewed by club officials as part of an internal investigation into the alleged events at their training base in La Manga, southern Spain, on Monday last week.

Adams said: "The first thing we will have to do is assess them both physically and mentally because it has been a traumatic time for them, as it has been for all of us."

Leicester City, some of whose players were involved in a drunken fracas while training at La Manga four years ago, have decided to ban alcohol from the players' bar at their stadium.

The chief operating officer, Paul Mace, also promised there would be "no whitewash" as an internal inquiry is carried out into the incident in southern Spain. He added: "There have already been investigations by the club. There won't be a knee-jerk reaction from us, but this is not something we [will] put off indefinitely."

Dickov, Sinclair and Gillespie are accused of attacking three African women at the five-star Hyatt Regency Hotel while on a training break.

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