Five former Ubisoft employees have reportedly been detained by French police investigating allegations of sexual assault and harassment at the company.
According to Libération, three ex-employees were placed in police custody on Tuesday and another two were arrested today.
Among those detained are former chief creative officer Serge Hascoet, who oversaw all of the company’s games as head of its influential editorial team, before resigning in July 2020 after a significant number of accusations were made against him.
Also taken into custody was Hascoet’s right-hand man, Tommy François, who was vice-president of editorial and creative services prior to his departure in August 2020 following accusations of sexual misconduct.
The arrests follow complaints filed simultaneously in the summer of 2021 by the French trade union Solidaires Informatique and two victims on their own behalf.
Following the complaints, judicial police reportedly collected testimonies from around 50 current and former Ubisoft employees during a year-long investigation.
In October 2021, an anonymous survey of almost 14,000 Ubisoft employees found that 20 percent of respondents didn’t feel “fully respected or safe in the work environment” and that 25 percent had witnessed or experienced workplace misconduct over the past two years.
The study was conducted by a third-party research firm in the wake of allegations of sexual harassment, sexism, and racism that summer.
Aside from Hascoet and François, other senior Ubisoft figures who stepped down or were fired in the wake of the allegations include Canadian studios MD Yannis Mallat, global head of HR Cécile Cornet, veteran creative director Maxime Béland, and Assassin’s Creed: Valhalla creative director Ashraf Ismail.