Olympic Council of Ireland appoints crisis management team

The Olympic Council of Ireland has appointed a three-person crisis management sub-committee to lead the council’s response to a controversy over Rio Olympics tickets. The decision was taken at the OCI’s first board meeting since the crisis in Rio. The board met for five hours at the offices of its legal advisors in Dublin.

The meeting was chaired by Acting President William O’Brien, who had arrived home from Rio just hours earlier.

He is one of three OCI staff members whose passport Brazilian authorities now say they are seeking.

After 2.30am three members of the board came out to read out a short statement.

Sarah Keane of Swim Ireland, Professor Ciarán Ó Catháin of Athletics Ireland and Robert Norwood of the Snowsports Association of Ireland announced they are the members of the crisis management sub-committee.

They said the sub-committee will appoint an international accountancy firm to conduct an independent review of ticketing arrangements in Rio.

They said that firm’s report will be presented to the judge chairing the State’s inquiry.

They would not answer questions but it later emerged that the board had also decided to appoint a Brazilian law firm to represent the OCI’s interests there.

It could not be established if the board meeting had been in communication with the members of the board who could not attend because their passports were taken from them in Brazil.

Pat Hickey is due to appear before a judge in Rio de Janeiro tomorrow to face allegations related to illegal resale of tickets for the Olympics.

Mr Hickey, who has temporarily stepped down as President of the Olympic Council of Ireland, denies any wrongdoing.

The Chief Investigating Officer has confirmed to RTÉ that all legal files pertaining to the case have been passed on to the Office of the Public Prosecutor.

Mr Hickey’s lawyers have said their client is being held on assumptions which, they contend, are not supported by any material evidence or proof.

An application to have Mr Hickey released on bail was turned down last week.

His lawyers have indicated that they will again seek to have Mr Hickey freed from Bangu prison, where he is being held.

Three members of the Olympic Council of Ireland are to be questioned by Brazilian police investigating the allegations of ticket touting.

Dermot Henihan, Kevin Kilty and Stephen Martin, whose passports were taken by investigators yesterday, have agreed to go along to a police station in the city tomorrow to answers questions.

Brazilian police are also reported to be seeking the passports of Mr O’Brien, OCI official Linda O’Reilly and OCI executive member and Chief Executive of the FAI John Delaney.

There is nothing to suggest any impropriety on the part of these individuals.

Three weeks ago, Kevin Mallon, a director of ticketing agency THG, was arrested by police in Rio de Janeiro investigating ticket touting.

Full Story from RTE News

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