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Ex-Olympic chief, Hickey, appears in court over ticket scandal

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Thomas Bach/ AFP PHOTO / FABRICE COFFRINI

Thomas Bach/ AFP PHOTO / FABRICE COFFRINI

Detained former Olympic Council of Ireland chief, Pat Hickey, will appear before a Brazilian judge today as part of an investigation into black market ticket sales, IOC president Thomas Bach has said.

The International Olympic Committee leader gave no other details, but the 71-year-old Hickey could be formally charged or the judge could order him released on bail.

“Mr. Hickey will have his first hearing by a judge next Tuesday,” Bach said yesterday on the sidelines of an IOC executive meeting in Rio at the end of the Olympic Games.

Hickey, an IOC member, former head of the OCI and the European Olympic Committees, was detained on Wednesday and is accused of involvement in a ticket scam, ambush marketing and conspiracy over the sale of Rio Olympics tickets at inflated prices.

He is now in the Bangu maximum security prison in Rio.

The ticket case has come as an embarrassment for the IOC. Bach again stressed the “presumption of innocence” in Hickey’s case. He has not criticised or supported the Irish official.

Hickey “temporarily” stood down from his official positions after the arrest so the IOC ethics commission has not yet launched an official investigation.

The scandal has been mounting since the arrest of Kevin Mallon on 5 August, the Irish head of the THG hospitality company.
Police said they seized hundreds of tickets from Mallon some of which had the Olympic Council of Ireland name on them.

Tickets, including for the Rio opening ceremony, with a face value of about €1,200 were offered for sale at €7,000.

Hickey denied any involvement with THG before his arrest.


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