Thorbjorn Olesen, charged with sexual assault among three charges, sees European Tour suspension lifted

Danish golfer Thorbjorn Olesen had his European Tour suspension lifted after the “unprecedented delay in court proceedings” due to COVID-19. He was originally scheduled to stand trial on May 11.

The decision makes him eligible to compete later this month in the British Masters, nearly a year since his last appearance.

“This will be reviewed following the conclusion of the legal process, but as this is an on-going legal matter the European Tour will be making no further comment at this time,” the tour said in a statement.

Olesen has been charged with sexual assault, common assault and being drunk on an aircraft during a flight from Nashville to London following his participation in the WGC FedEx St. Jude Invitational. According to multiple reports, Olesen allegedly assaulted a woman and urinated in the aisle of a plane while drunk on the flight. The Sun reported that Ian Poulter had to calm Olesen down after he was allegedly abusive toward passengers and crew in first class. Olesen allegedly assaulted the woman while Poulter slept.

“He started abusing some of the passengers and crew and then made a pass at one of the female passengers before taking a leak in the aisle,” one passenger on the flight told The Sun. “It was shocking behavior. You would expect it maybe on a budget airline but not in the first-class cabin on BA.”

Olesen has pleaded not guilty to all three charges.

Olesen’s court case has been delayed to December 2021. The European Tour suspended Olesen on Aug. 6, pending the investigation into his arrest.

“While my team and I initially agreed that I would not participate in Tour events while the legal proceedings were outstanding, I am naturally grateful to the European Tour for allowing me to continue my career following the lengthy adjournment of my trial,” Olesen said in a statement.

Olesen is competing in a tournament for the first time since the WGC FedEx St. Jude last July at the Danish PGA Championship, and spoke to reporters following the tournament.
“I am incredibly sad about what has happened and would like to apologize to all the Danes who have supported me for so many years,” Olesen said. “I basically haven’t played golf in a year. I played for a week in November in Spain, and then I’ve been playing for the last couple of weeks—that’s it. Since I started playing, I’ve never had anything like that where I haven’t played in such a long time. It’s hard.”

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