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Two B.C. police officers detained in Cuba to face disciplinary hearing

Disciplinary action still possible for B.C. cops acquitted in Cuba
WATCH: (Aired Jan. 7, 2019) Constables Mark Simms and Jordan Long may still face disciplinary action after being acquitted of sexual assault charges in Cuba. Grace Ke has more on where the investigation goes from here.

The two Metro Vancouver area police officers who were detained in Cuba for months following sexual assault allegations will face a police disciplinary hearing.

Vancouver police Const. Mark Simms and Port Moody police Const. Jordan Long were detained in Cuba in March of 2018, after Simms was accused of engaging in sexual activity with a 17-year-old girl from Ontario who had also been vacationing in the resort town.

B.C. police officers detained in Cuba for 10 months still face misconduct investigation at home
B.C. police officers detained in Cuba for 10 months still face misconduct investigation at home

Long was held as a material witness to the alleged crime.

Supporters, including Simms’ sister and his reverend, travelled to Cuba and maintained the men were innocent, pointing to a dearth of evidence and problems with the Cuban justice system — including a lack of language services for the two men, who do not speak Spanish.

Eight months later, the pair were acquitted by a Cuban court and were allowed to return home in January.

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Following a lengthy Police Act investigation into allegations of discreditable conduct, the two officers will now face a disciplinary proceeding.

READ MORE: B.C. police officers detained in Cuba for 10 months return home

That process, which is not open to the public, could result in a range of disciplinary action up to and including dismissal, according to the Office of the Police Complaint Commissioner.

The Police Act states discreditable misconduct occurs when an officer, whether on or off duty, “conducts oneself in a manner that the member knows, or ought to know, would be likely to bring discredit on the municipal police department.”

— With files from Simon Little