Rio Olympics: Police seize assets from Irish staffers


RIO DE JANEIRO >> Brazilian police investigating Olympic ticket scalping raided Ireland's office at the athletes village Sunday as delegation members had their passports seized on the final day of the Rio Games.

The expansion of the investigation came as IOC executive Patrick Hickey, the Olympic Council of Ireland president, remained in jail following his arrest on Wednesday.

No further arrests were made Sunday but the OCI said additional members of its delegation have been "asked to present for questioning at a local police station on Tuesday. They agreed to do so."

The OCI's Dublin-based public relations agency said about three Irish personnel had passports, phones and laptops seized.

"Early this morning in Rio, Brazilian police arrived at the OCI offices in the Olympic Village and at OCI accommodation outside of the village," the OCI said.

Unused official games tickets were also taken from the Irish office in the Olympic Village, which the OCI said were for athletes' families and friends.

"We are continuing the investigation into the international scheme of ticket scalping," Rio police said. "Agents are conducting investigations since this morning which will continue until Tuesday."

The investigation has been unfolding through the Olympics, with the first arrests made two weeks ago.

The highest-profile figure swept up by investigators is Hickey, the head of the umbrella organization for Europe's Olympic bodies. Hickey was due to be spending the closing ceremony of the Olympics on Sunday in Rio's Bangu prison complex after his lawyers failed to secure his release on bail.

"Mr. Hickey has been arrested due to suppositions that are not supported by any material evidence or proof of the alleged facts presented by the police," Hickey's lawyer, Arthur Lavigne, said in a statement. "His arrest has no legal support. The investigation did not bring one single slight indication that Mr. Hickey could be involved with the facts therein investigated, and his detention was required by the police authority under mere assumptions."


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