Nuzman, Brazil committee suspended by IOC

Violet Powell
October 7, 2017

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. They claim that it has been at the heart of a misappropriation of United States $2 million to Lamine Diack, a former International Olympic Committee member of Senegal, who has helped secure votes for Rio de Janeiro in view of the 2009 election.

"Given the new facts, the International Olympic Committee ethics commission may consider provisional measures while respecting Mr. Nuzman's right to be heard", said the statement, which did not offer more details. No charges have yet been laid.

Carlos Arthur Nuzman, 75, was taken into custody along with Leonardo Gryner, a former director of the national Olympics committee, the police said. "Today's measures are harsh and unusual". Nuzman is an honorary member of the IOC.

The 2009 vote was held in Copenhagen and Rio beat Chicago, Madrid and Tokyo, much to the annoyance of former U.S. president Barack Obama who turned up in person to lobby on behalf of his home city.

"While Olympic medallists sought to realise the dream of gold medals, the heads of the Olympic committee hid their gold in Switzerland", the Wall Street Journal newspaper quoted Brazilian federal prosecutor Fabiana Schneider from a televised press conference. Prosecutors described him as Mr. Nuzman's "right-hand man".

Brazilian authorities have said the behind-the-scenes dealings to win the vote amounted to a "criminal organisation".

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Sergio Mazzillo, a lawyer for Nuzman, said then his client was innocent.

Suspending the COB is an unprecedented act by the IOC EB.

In the scheme investigated, there would be the participation of former Rio de Janeiro's governor Sérgio Cabral.

On Thursday, Brazilian authorities said Nuzman's net worth increased by 457 percent in his last 10 years as the country's Olympic leader.

Suspending Nuzman and removing him from Tokyo work was recommended on Thursday by Ban Ki-Moon, the former United Nations secretary general who the International Olympic Committee announced last month would chair its panel scrutinizing unethical conduct.

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