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Ex-Whitecaps women's coach accused of sexual misconduct by former player

VANCOUVER — A former head coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps women's team is facing allegations of attempting to solicit sex from a player.

VANCOUVER — A former head coach of the Vancouver Whitecaps women's team is facing allegations of attempting to solicit sex from a player.

Malloree Enoch, an American female soccer player, detailed allegations of inappropriate behaviour by Hubert Busby Jr. during his time as head coach of the Whitecaps between 2010 and 2011 in an interview with British newspaper the Guardian.

Enoch said Busby promised to sign her as a player for the team, and alleged he then repeatedly made her room with him on various trips, and eventually attempted to pressure her for sex.

She told the newspaper that she shared her concerns with Dan Lenarduzzi, the team's soccer development director, after signing with the team in 2011, but no action was immediately taken.

Enoch said it culminated in a group of Whitecaps women's players bringing their concerns about Busby, and their overall treatment as players, to management.

Busby's contract with the Whitecaps expired in Oct. 2011 and was not renewed by the team.

The Whitecaps did not return a request for comment made by The Canadian Press.

The Canadian-raised Busby was appointed head coach of Jamaica's women's team in January 2020 after previously serving as an assistant coach.

Busby previously represented Jamaica at the men's level from 2001 to 2003.

The Jamaican Football Federation said it is aware of the allegations and it will be meeting with Busby on Nov. 2.

Busby previously worked with Seattle Sounders women's team as head coach and general manager and has also coached at the U.S. collegiate level.

The Sounders women's team, not affiliated with Seattle Sounders FC in Major League Soccer, has since folded.

The team's former owner did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Busby's time with the club.

Busby could not immediately be reached for comment, but denied the allegations when contacted earlier this month by the Guardian.

It's a second time a Whitecaps women's coach has faced allegations of abusive behaviour.

Ciara McCormack first brought the allegations against former Canadian women's under-20 coach Bob Birarda to public attention with a blog post in February 2019.

Canada Soccer said on Saturday that it has agreed to a "transparent, independent review of the investigation of allegations" against Birarda during the time when he was employed by the association.

Birarda was a former coach for the Whitecaps and has been charged with sexual offences involving four people. He's facing six counts of sexual exploitation, two counts of sexual assault and one count of child luring.

The alleged offences occurred between January 1988 and March 25, 2008. The allegations have not yet been tested in court.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Oct. 28, 2021.

Nick Wells, The Canadian Press