Friday 2 December 2016

Pat Hickey will not appear in Rio court until Friday 'at the earliest'

Mr Hickey has been in custody at Bangu prison in West Rio since last Friday

Cathal McMahon

Published 23/08/2016 | 15:02

Pat Hickey speaks to Brazilian police at the Windsor Hotel in Rio
Pat Hickey speaks to Brazilian police at the Windsor Hotel in Rio
Pat Hickey has stepped aside from his role as president of the Olympic Council of Ireland

A solicitor for Pat Hickey has confirmed that he will not appear in court in Rio today.

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It will be Friday at the earliest before Mr Hickey's case is even distributed to a specific court, the judicial processing unit in Rio de Janeiro confirmed.

Pat Hickey has stepped aside from his role as president of the Olympic Council of Ireland
Pat Hickey has stepped aside from his role as president of the Olympic Council of Ireland

Senior Olympic officials said Mr Hickey, who temporarily stood down as President of the Olympic Council of Ireland after his arrest last Wednesday, was due to appear before a judge today.

However a solicitor for the 71-year-old confirmed that this will not now happen.

The lawyer said: "The judiciary recess ended today, and the prosecutor has not yet present his case before the judge, so it will not be possible for the judge to whom the case will be assigned to already be aware of the matter."

The manager of the Second Presidency, the judicial processing unit in Rio de Janeiro, has revealed that it will be Friday at the earliest before Mr Hickey's case is even distributed to a specific court.

The manager said she had over 800 cases to deal with since August 5 on her desk and these were being processed chronologically.

The manager said: "There is a queue and he's in the queue just like anyone else there is no fast-tracking.

"Other people came in first, he only came in on the 19th."

The backlog in the Brazilian legal system is due to regular courts being closed for the duration of the Rio Olympics.

Mr Hickey's case only appeared in the courts system on August 19.

Mr Hickey has been in custody at Bangu prison in West Rio since last Friday.

He has been formally accused under Brazilian law of ticket touting, running a cartel and illicit marketing.

His solicitor has completely denied the allegations. Rio-based lawyer Arthur Lavigne said Mr Hickey was arrested "under mere assumptions" and claimed the police probe “has no legal support”.

In a statement the lawyer said: “Mr. Hickey has been arrested due to suppositions that are not supported by any material evidence or proof of the alleged facts presented by the police.  His arrest has no legal support.  The investigation did not bring one single slight indication that Mr. Hickey could be involved with the facts therein investigated, and his detention was required by the police authority under mere assumptions.

"Mr. Hickey did not try to escape as informed by the police. He was sleeping already for two days in one of the three rooms that were allocated to him and his family, due to an insomnia, and he did not want to disturb his wife. 

"It would be ridiculous to try to escape and go to the next room, which was officially booked to him... The video shot during his arrest shows that he was awakening at that very same time, wearing a robe.

"His wife was took [taken] by surprise with almost 10 men standing on her door at 6 am, and panicked. Mr. Hickey did not resist to the arrest order, and all the rest is unreal story told to make the headlines.”

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