Brazilian Olympic chief arrested in Rio de Janeiro

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has suspended Brazil Olympic Committee and its president, Carlos Nuzman, amid an investigation into a vote-buying scheme to bring the Rio Games past year.

They being indicted for "corruption, money laundering and criminal organisation". He was arrested in Brazil on Thursday along with Leonardo Gryner, another local Olympic committee official, as part of an investigation known as "Operation Unfair Play".

Nuzman is suspected by Brazilian prosecutors of being the main link between de Menezes, a businessman nicknamed "King Arthur", and Senegal's former International Association of Athletics Federations President Lamine Diack.

The scheme was discovered when prosecutors investigating the mega Lava Jato corruption scheme started looking into former governor Sergio Cabral's illegal activities. No charges have yet been laid.


According to the Federal Prosecutors' Office, the temporary arrest of Nuzman was necessary because the COB president attempted to hide property.

The search of Nuzman's home also led to the discovery of a key to a safe in Switzerland where Nuzman reportedly stashed 6 bars of gold, which he did not disclose in his tax filings until weeks after the raid.

The provisional suspension of the COB is justified on the grounds that both the National Olympic Committee itself and its President, Nuzman, were responsible for the successful candidature of Rio de Janeiro in 2009.

Diack was a voting member of the International Olympic Committee when Rio was awarded the Summer Olympics in 2009.


Nuzman, a 75-year-old lawyer, was also removed from the IOC's panel overseeing preparations for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. Prosecutors described him as Mr. Nuzman's "right-hand man".

"The IOC's Chief Ethics and Compliance Officer has asked the Brazilian authorities for full information in order to proceed with the IOC's investigation, and has offered the IOC's full cooperation", the group said in a statement, but added later, "[The IOC] also reiterates that the presumption of innocence prevails".

By press release, the International Olympic Committee said to offer its full cooperation to the authorities, while continuing its own investigation. Yesterday, whistle-blower Eric Maleson told ATR that he had written to the IOC yet again asking for intervention in the committee.

The IOC board chaired by President Thomas Bach approved Ban's suggested sanctions on Friday, and added others, in a further sign of frustration with Rio organizers since the troubled Summer Games ended 14 months ago.



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