Olympic tickets: Pat Hickey case not yet assigned Rio judge

OCI president and Kevin Mallon said to be ‘keeping well’ as they await decision

Olympic Council of Ireland chief Pat Hickey’s lawyers in Rio de Janeiro have not responded to calls from this newspaper. File photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

Olympic Council of Ireland chief Pat Hickey’s lawyers in Rio de Janeiro have not responded to calls from this newspaper. File photograph: Billy Stickland/Inpho

 

The two Irishmen arrested in Brazil as part of a police investigation into alleged ticket touting at the Olympic Games are still waiting for judges to be assigned to their cases.

Pat Hickey, of the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI), and Kevin Mallon, the Dublin finance director of British company THG, spent another day in a Rio remand prison, as a court spokesperson said yesterday their cases were still to be distributed to the judges who will oversee them.

The distribution of cases has been held up as Rio’s court system only returned to regular sessions on Tuesday after being in recess for the Games.

“We hope with their return [Mr Mallon’s] liberty will be rapidly re-established,” said his lawyer Franklin Gomes.

After being assigned a case, a judge can decide to throw it out or, if allowing the investigation to proceed, whether the accused can remain at liberty until it is completed.

Mr Mallon has been detained since August 5th while Mr Hickey was arrested at his Rio hotel last Wednesday.

Writs rejected

Their legal representatives have so far failed to release them from prison after judges rejected separate writs for habeas corpus.

Mr Gomes is currently attempting to secure habeas corpus for his client from Brazil’s supreme court, after a bid to the country’s highest appeals court failed.

Mr Hickey’s lawyers in Rio have not responded to calls from this newspaper.

‘Keeping well’

On Tuesday, police released several emails recovered from Mr Hickey’s computers in which he appeared to discuss passing OCI tickets to Marcus Evans – the British millionaire who owns THG.

The OCI sought to have THG appointed as its official ticket vendor for the Rio Games but organisers rejected the application and it was unauthorised to sell tickets or hospitality packages for the event.

Police say that Mr Hickey conspired with Mr Evans to circumnavigate the ban.

Mr Evans and several of his employees are being sought by investigators, as are the three directors of OCI’s official ticket vendor for the Rio Games, Pro10.

In a statement to The Irish Times, Rio’s penitentiary administration said Mr Hickey and Mr Mallon continue to share a cell at the José Frederico Marques remand prison, known as Bangú 10, and that “the detainees are keeping well”.

Free to leave

The two men have the right to a “sun bath” – time in an open-air yard – each day and are allowed to receive visits from relatives once they have registered with authorities.

They are fed bread and butter with milk and coffee for breakfast while lunch and dinner is made up of rice or pasta, beans, cassava flour, vegetables, salad and either meat, fish or chicken. Both meals come with a dessert.

One of 25 units making up Brazil’s biggest prison complex, Bangú 10 currently holds 396 men.

OCI official Dermot Henihan was still waiting for authorities to return his passport to him after police said on Tuesday they believed he had no involvement in the alleged scheme.

They say once he has his passport back, he is free to leave the country. Two other officials who also had their passports seized on Sunday are due to be interviewed by police today.