Australian Olympic figure skater Brendan Kerry has said he will appeal against a lifetime ban in the United States for sexual misconduct involving a minor.

The US Center for SafeSport banned Kerry from any events or activities controlled by the US Olympic and Paralympic Committee (USOPC) in a ruling on Tuesday.

Kerry denied wrongdoing and said he would contest the ban.

“After hearing nothing from the US Center for SafeSport for almost three years … I received their decision with no advance warning whatsoever, sanctioning me for alleged violations that I did not commit,” he said in a statement published by Australian media on Thursday.

“That decision is not final and I intend to challenge this suspension and request arbitration before a neutral arbitrator as is my right.”

Kerry, 29, competed at three Winter Olympics and was one of Australia’s two flagbearers at the opening ceremony of the 2022 Beijing Games, his last major international competition.

He was a registered coach with US Figure Skating in the 2016-17 season, when the misconduct was alleged to have occurred.

The US Center for SafeSport was established in 2017 with the aim of protecting athletes, particularly minors, from sexual abuse in Olympic sports programs in the United States.

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