Brazilian court agrees to suspend Mallon hearing on Rio tickets

Dubliner was due to appear in court with former OCI president Pat Hickey on November 29th

Kevin Mallon after his release from prison in Rio de Janeiro.

Kevin Mallon after his release from prison in Rio de Janeiro.

 

The Supreme court in Brazil has granted an injunction to suspend the Rio de Janeiro court hearing in which Dublin man Kevin Mallon was due to give evidence as part of his ongoing trial for alleged ticket touting and other crimes during last years Olympic Games.

THG executive Mr Mallon and former Olympic Council of Ireland president Pat Hickey were due to appear in a Rio de Janeiro court on November 29th, at what is known as an “Instruction and Judgement” hearing, where the judge would hear witnesses for both prosecution and defence.

Both men were legally required to attend the hearing, as part of a bond contract each signed in order to have their passports returned, enabling them to leave Brazil late last year.

However, the Sao Paulo based legal team for the Dublin man arrested on the eve of the international sporting event last year, has succeeded in having the process suspended while the supreme court analyses the strength of the prosecution’s case.

Lawyer Franklin Gomes said the case had been mishandled since the outset. “We are shouting, but no-one is listening.” He said that the local court in Rio de Janeiro repeatedly failed to follow procedure.

“We lodged several preliminary questions to the court in the last year, but these were never responded to. No one has looked at the documents we submitted.”

A spokeswoman for the supreme court of justice, confirmed that the trial in Rio de Janeiro was suspended until the Brasília court analysed the merit of a habeas corpus claim lodged on behalf of Mr Mallon.She said the Rio trial would remain on hold until this case is decided in the Brazilian capital.

She was unable to immediately confirm whether the entire process was suspended, or just Mr Mallon’s participation. It remains unclear whether Mr Hickey is still due in court at the end of the month.

Both Mr Hickey and Mr Mallon deny any wrongdoing.

On behalf of Mr Mallon, Mr Gomes has complained that he could not adequately build his client’s defence, as no evidence was offered, nor was there clarity on his client’s alleged involvement in any crime on Brazilian jurisdiction.

Mr Gomes said he was confident the supreme court judge would decide “in accordance with the law”, and that Mr Mallon “will be absolved of all accusations.” He said the handling of the case since last year has been “absurd”, and asserted “there is absolutely zero evidence against him”.