Tuesday 27 September 2016

Two more people named in court documents

Matt Sandy and Ryan Nugent

Published 10/08/2016 | 02:30

A Brazilian official shows one of the tickets referring to the National Olympic Council of Ireland that was allegedly seized from Kevin Mallon. Getty Images
A Brazilian official shows one of the tickets referring to the National Olympic Council of Ireland that was allegedly seized from Kevin Mallon. Getty Images

Two more people have been named in court documents in the special Olympic Court charged with investigating the ticket tout scandal.

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Police detained director of THG Sports Kevin James Mallon and translator Barbara Carnieri, who they said was also an employee of the company, on charges of fraudulent marketing of tickets for the Games.

Police detained director of THG Sports Kevin James Mallon (pictured) and translator Barbara Carnieri, who they said was also an employee of the company, on charges of fraudulent marketing
of tickets for the Games. Getty Images
Police detained director of THG Sports Kevin James Mallon (pictured) and translator Barbara Carnieri, who they said was also an employee of the company, on charges of fraudulent marketing of tickets for the Games. Getty Images

Two others have been named as defendants in the case - Marcus Evans and John Dee.

The directors of THG Sports Tours Ltd include Marcus Evans, the owner of Ipswich Town Football Club, and Kevin Mallon, who has an address in Drimnagh, Dublin. A representative for the court in Rio could not verify if the Marcus Evans listed in court documents is the same director of THG Sports.

Police said they seized more than 1,000 tickets that were being marketed at "very high" prices for the Rio Games.

Read more: Firm at centre of €3m Rio ticketing scandal to 'vigorously defend' Irishman accused of touting

Marcus Evans
Marcus Evans

The tickets displayed by police referred to the "NOC of Ireland" (the National Olympic Council of Ireland). The Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) said it had "no knowledge" of the arrested pair and had launched an "immediate investigation".

A representative told the Irish Independent: "The OCI senior executives' previous dealings with THG have always been with Marcus Evans and Ian Milne (their legal counsel) and they have not met or had dealings with other directors of THG."

However, the Irish Independent has since seen court documents that list Marcus Evans and a 'John Dee' at a special Olympic court in Rio de Janeiro.

Neither of the men have been arrested or detained and it is not clear if they are even in Brazil. It is possible the investigation against them will continue until judgment, without them being called to appear before a court.

The OCI spokesperson declined to comment on the revelation that someone called Marcus Evans had been listed on court documents in Rio.

In 2012, THG Sports was Ireland's authorised ticket seller but Pro 10 has taken over the role this year. There is no suggestion Pro 10 is involved in these ticket sales.

The Irish Independent can also reveal that THG Sports previously sold hospitality tickets for the FAI. On its website, THG is described as the "sole provider of hospitality at all FAI home matches at the Aviva Stadium".

However, the FAI last night distanced itself from the company, saying THG is no longer involved with the association.

THG said it offered three levels of service for Ireland's World Cup qualifiers in 2013 - including "experience lounge" and "executive hospitality" packages.

"We don't work with THG Hospitality," an FAI spokesman said. The reason why its relationship ended with THG had "nothing to do with ethics".

Mr Mallon - who is listed as a director and secretary of THG Sport Tours Ltd - was detained in possession of tickets and faces charges of false marketing, associating with criminals, and touting. As well as having offices in the UK and US, the THG Group is also based in Ireland - under the directorship of the arrested man, Mr Mallon (36).

Mr Mallon's listed home address is in Drimnagh, Dublin 12.

In response to Mr Mallon's arrest, THG Sports said he had not breached any local laws or IOC rules and that the company would be "vigorously defending Mr Mallon as well as taking any appropriate action to stop any illegitimate attempt by the Brazilian authorities to disrupt THG's legitimate activities".

Brazilian police said THG had been offering tickets for the opening ceremony at more than four times the original price. The combined worth of the illegal ticket sales could have been up to €3m.

Irish Independent

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