IOC exec Hickey arrested in Olympic ticket scalping scandal

Rio de Janeiro, Aug.
17, (GNA/dpa) – International Olympic Committee (IOC) executive board member
Patrick Hickey has been arrested in Rio de Janeiro as part of an investigation
into alleged illegal Olympic ticket sales, Brazilian police confirmed Wednesday.

Hickey, president of
Ireland’s Olympic Council (OCI), is accused of illegally passing on Olympics
tickets to scalpers who subsequently sold them at exorbitant prices.

The OCI did not
immediately confirm the arrest but said in a short statement it “is aware
of the media stories regarding Pat Hickey and we are seeking total clarity on
the situation before we comment further.”

And the IOC said it
was “still in the process of establishing the facts.”

Hickey, 71, has been
on the IOC executive board since 2012. He leads the group of European Olympic
Committees (EOC).

According to
Brazilian media reports, Hickey tried to escape when they arrived to arrest him
in his hotel room in the Barra district of Rio.

Hickey reportedly
fell ill after being arrested and received medical attention though reports
about him being taken to the hospital remain unconfirmed.

Two people were
arrested earlier in August amid allegations that Olympic tickets earmarked for
Ireland’s Olympic Council were sold on the black market in Rio de Janeiro.

One of those
individuals was sports hospitality company THG Sports director Kevin Mallon, an
Irishman who was alleged to have resold Rio Olympics tickets illegally at
inflated prices of up to 6,000 pounds (7,800 dollars).

Hickey’s arrest
followed Mallon’s from the day of the opening ceremony. When he was arrested on
August 5, Mallon was in possession of more than 800 top-class tickets for the
Games.

Four further THG
directors are also wanted in connection to the probe including Marcus Evans,
owner of the Marcus Evans Group which is the parent company to THG.

GNA

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