Brazilian Olympic chief arrested on corruption charges
Rio 2016 boss accused of bribing African jurors during the bidding process
The president of Brazil’s Olympic Committee has been arrested on charges of corruption, after he admitted having 16 gold bars in a Swiss bank.
According to state-run news agency Agencia Brasil, Carlos Nuzman, who oversaw the 2016 Rio Games, is alleged to have been involved in an operation to buy votes during the bidding process.
Nuzman is believed to have acted as an intermediary in an alleged $2m (£1.5m) payment to Papa Massata Diack, the son of an influential Senegalese member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC) and head of the International Association of Athletic Federations (IAAF).
The general director of operations for the organising committee of Rio 2016, Leonardo Gryner, was also arrested. Both men are being indicted for corruption, money laundering and organised crime.
It follows a joint investigation, dubbed Operation Unfair Play, conducted with Brazilian, French and US police.
In September, the BBC reported that Nuzman had his home searched and passport seized before being questioned. It was at this time that he admitted to possessing the gold bars.
Yesterday, prosecutors issued a statement saying that “in the past 10-22 years of his presidency of the Brazilian Olympic Committee, Nuzman increased his wealth by 457%, without a clear indication of [where this came from]”.
Earlier this year former Rio State Governor Sergio Cabral was jailed for 14 years after participating in the embezzlement of $64m (£49m) from construction contracts, including the renovation of Rio’s Maracana stadium, where the 2016 opening and closing ceremonies were held.