Former Quebec media star Éric Salvail acquitted of sexual assault

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Former host Éric Salvail has been acquitted of charges of sexual assault, forcible confinement and harassment.

Quebec Court Judge Alexandre Dalmau issued his ruling at the Montreal courthouse.

Salvail's former co-worker Donald Duguay alleged that the events took place between April and October 1993.

At the trial, Duguay testified that following months of advances, sexual comments, and inappropriate touching at the workplace, Salvail confined and sexually assaulted him in a Radio-Canada bathroom.

Salvail, 51, chose to testify in his defence, and denied all allegations against him. He repeated that he was not employed at Radio-Canada when the alleged offences occurred.

His trial took place last month in front of a judge alone.

Salvail was arrested in January 2019.

According to information obtained from Radio-Canada, a dozen complaints were filed against the television host.

In October 2017, La Presse reported allegations from people who claimed to be witnesses or victims of sexual misconduct by Salvail in a professional setting.

Group V Media suspended Salvail's show En mode Salvail in the wake of the allegations.

The host withdrew from public life shortly after the report.