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Brazil's Olympic Committee Head Is Detained in Bribe Inquiry

Brazil's Olympic Committee Head Is Detained in Bribe Inquiry

The head of the Rio Olympics, who was arrested on suspicion of corruption yesterday, had 16 gold bars in a Swiss depository, police in Brazil have revealed.

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 IOC will not comment further on this matter until a recommendation is issued by the IOC Ethics Commission", Olympic officials stated. No charges have yet been laid.

Prosecutors said Brazilian Olympic Committee President Carlos Arthur Nuzman and his deputy, Leonardo Gryner, brokered the payment of bribes to undecided IOC members ahead of a 2009 vote on what city would host last year's Olympics.

Nuzman's attorney characterized the arrest as "harsh and unusual", according ot the G1 news portal. He is believed to have stored gold bars in Geneva. Nuzman, 75 years, has been a key figure in the nomination of brazil. Rio won the games in 2009 with 66 votes in the third round of voting among the International Olympic Committee members.

Nelio Machado, a lawyer for Nuzman, told reporters the accusation of vote-buying for the 2016 Olympics was unfounded.

Rio defeated Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago to host the 2016 Games.

In September, Mr Nuzman's home was searched.

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

In June, former Rio State Governor Sergio Cabral was jailed for 14 years after participating in the embezzlement of $64m from construction contracts, including the renovation of Rio's Maracana stadium, where the 2016 opening and closing ceremonies were held.

The Lausanne-based International Olympic Committee said it is cooperating with the investigation, but stressed that innocence must be presumed until guilt is proven.

As well as suspending the COB, the IOC has also provisionally ended its relationship with Rio 2016's organising committee.


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