Rio 2016 Olympic chief arrested

Lynne Hanson
October 6, 2017

Brazilian police arrested the head of the national Olympics committee, Carlos Arthur Nuzman, who is accused of conspiring to bribe members of the International Olympic Committee in order to make them pick Rio de Janeiro as host of the 2016 games.

A source is in possession of emails that could corroborate the accusations, according to Brazilian justice officials.

The 75-year-old Nuzman was not detained in September but has now been arrested, along with Rio 2016's general director Leonardo Gryner.

Others suspected of being involved in the bribery scheme include former governor Sérgio Cabral, and officials say funding was provided by Brazilian businessman Arthur Cesar Soares de Menezes Filho.

Investigators also searched the offices of Brazil's Olympic Committee and several companies suspected of links to the scandal.

Reuters report that Marcelo Bretas, the federal judge who authorized his arrest, said new evidence indicated that Nuzman's role in the alleged vote-buying scheme was "more relevant" than initially thought.

Brazilian newspaper O'Globo talked to investigators who revealed that $155,000 (U.S.) was found at Nuzman's residence in five different currencies and 16 one kilogram gold bars were recently deposited in Switzerland.

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Nuzman's home was raided last month and documents taken into police control.

Nuzman sits in the back of a police vehicle. Rio beat bids from Chicago, Madrid and Tokyo to host the 2016 games. In their statement they cite an email from Papa Massata directly asking Nuzman for help with "the final process", and an email discussing difficulties in bank transfers. Tokyo eventually won the right to host in 2020 while the International Olympic Committee recently awarded the 2024 and 2028 editions to Paris and Los Angeles respectively. Nuzman is an honorary International Olympic Committee member after his membership ended in 2013.

The IOC is cooperating and is also proceeding with its own internal investigation.

The investigation is ongoing.

The group "will not comment further on this matter until a recommendation is issued by the IOC Ethics Commission", and it "reiterates that the presumption of innocence prevails".

"Given the new facts, the IOC Ethics Commission may consider provisional measures while respecting Mr. Nuzman's right to be heard", the IOC said, without detailing the measures.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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