Ex-diver: Dispute ended: Compensation and compensation for Hempel

The dispute between former diver Jan Hempel and the German Swimming Association over compensation for years of sexual abuse has been settled.

Ex-diver: Dispute ended: Compensation and compensation for Hempel

The dispute between former diver Jan Hempel and the German Swimming Association over compensation for years of sexual abuse has been settled. The DSV is paying the 1996 Olympic silver medalist compensation and damages totaling 600,000 euros.

Hempel's lawyer Thomas Summerer and his manager Oliver Hillebrecht had reached the agreement in lengthy negotiations with the DSV, which was represented by the two vice presidents Wolfgang Rupieper and Kai Morgenroth. This emerges from a message from Summerer to the German Press Agency. The DSV also announced that an agreement had been reached with Hempel.

Fixed payment and monthly installments

The DSV had set up an independent review commission that recommended an arbitration procedure. This now resulted in a settlement that guaranteed Hempel a fixed payment of 300,000 euros and a payment of a further 300,000 euros in monthly installments over ten years. This avoided a lawsuit with an uncertain outcome. The amount of this compensation payment is unusual in Germany.

"I am very happy that we were able to find an out-of-court solution that combines legal and moral claims. A longer process, possibly over several instances, would have done more harm than good to my client," said lawyer Summerer (63).

"It is of central importance for the DSV to ensure the integrity and safety of our members and activists. This decision reflects our moral obligation and deep respect for Jan Hempel and all those affected," said Vice President Wolfgang Rupieper.

Processing Commission welcomes arbitration

The processing commission welcomed the amicable mediation in the case. "We see this as a responsible and integrity-based step by swimming to make amends for injustices suffered and see this as a valuable impulse for our task of shedding light on cases of abuse in German swimming and using them to develop recommendations for future protection against violence," said Bettina Rulofs and Martin Nolte, who chaired the commission.

Hempel's case sparked a broad discussion about abuse and violence in German sport and how to deal with it. In August 2022, Hempel made the allegations of sexual abuse against his long-time coach Werner Langer, who died in 2001, public for the first time in an ARD documentary entitled “Abused - Sexualized Violence in German Swimming.” Accordingly, Langer is said to have attacked the Olympic silver medalist in Atlanta in 1996 from 1982 to 1996. In the film, Hempel accused the DSV of knowing about the allegations in 1997 but not doing anything decisive.

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