Prosecutor Sabbe, convicted of sexual assault, soon to retire

The former chief prosecutor of East Flanders was sentenced in June by the Ghent Court of Appeal to four months suspended prison sentence for indecent assault and sexual harassment at work. He allegedly sent unwanted messages to his personal driver Vanessa Cantaert, and touched her in her service car in December 2018.

After his victim filed a complaint, Johan Sabbe was suspended in the summer of 2020. Since then, he has stayed away from the prosecution. But, when he was sentenced a few months ago, the prosecutor was not removed from his post by the judge. He therefore remained uncertain about his return to the Ghent public prosecutor’s office for a long time.

Consideration had been given to offering him another post in the prosecution, but the prosecutor finally asked in July to be able to retire. He will soon be 62 years old, and is therefore eligible. His pension will take effect from March 1, 2022.

In the meantime, he maintains that he is innocent in this sexual assault case. His lawyer has lodged a cassation appeal, which will be considered next month.


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