Thursday 19 July 2018

Sports Committee wants Olympic ticketing inquiry probe into Pat Hickey's THG deal reopened

Ireland's former Olympic boss Pat Hickey
Ireland's former Olympic boss Pat Hickey
Philip Ryan

Philip Ryan

The Oireachtas Sports Committee is seeking to have the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) ticket inquiry reopened to examine the contract Pat Hickey agreed with the hospitality company at the centre of the controversy.

It emerged after retired Judge Carroll Moran published his report on the Rio Olympics scandal that Mr Hickey, the former OCI president, signed a deal with UK firm THG to allow the company resell OCI tickets until 2026.

Now the Sports Committee chaired by Louth TD Fergus O’Dowd will seek to have Judge Moran reopen his inquiry and investigate who knew about the terms of the contract.

The committee will also ask the Office of the Director of Corporate Enforcement (ODCE) to examine the ticketing fiasco which resulted in the arrest of Mr Hickey while he was in Brazil last summer.

The OCDE will be specifically asked to look at the €60,000 a year honorarium paid by the OCI to Mr Hickey.

Read More: 'Report absolutely did not clear anything' - Brazil prosecutor says he will pursue Pat Hickey

Tickets of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games seized to one of the directors of THG Sports, a company of international business events and information group Marcus Evans, Irish Kevin James Mallon, are displayed during a press conference at the City Police's station in Benfica, north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on August 8, 2016. / AFP / TASSO MARCELO
Tickets of the Rio 2016 Olympic Games seized to one of the directors of THG Sports, a company of international business events and information group Marcus Evans, Irish Kevin James Mallon, are displayed during a press conference at the City Police's station in Benfica, north of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, on August 8, 2016. / AFP / TASSO MARCELO

The Dail’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will also be asked to investigate issues surrounding how taxpayers’ money is paid to the OCI from Sport Ireland.

It has also emerged Mr Hickey will not be compelled to appear before the Oireachtas Sports Committee while his trial in Brazil is ongoing over fears his appearance could prejudice proceedings.

However, the committee will ask the Irish ambassador in Brazil to get an update on the timeline of Mr Hickey’s trial.

Read More: Hickey may now be compelled to appear before committee

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