Friday 23 August 2019

French charge IOC member Frankie Fredericks in Rio corruption probe

Frankie Fredericks is a member of the International Olympic Committee
Frankie Fredericks is a member of the International Olympic Committee

Former Olympic sprinter Frankie Fredericks has been handed preliminary charges in a French investigation into vote-buying around the decision to award the 2016 Olympics to Rio de Janeiro.

An official close to the investigation told the Associated Press that Fredericks was questioned on Thursday and handed charges of passive corruption and laundering corrupt goods.

The case is part of an international effort to investigate suspected Olympic corruption.

Fredericks, a member of the International Olympic Committee, has said he is innocent.

The Namibian sprinter is suspected of links to a 299,300-dollar (about £230,000) payment on the day Rio was awarded the 2016 Games.

Preliminary charges under French law mean there is strong reason to believe a crime was committed but allow magistrates further time to investigate.

Fredericks stepped aside from his Olympic duties - including leading a panel evaluating the Paris 2024 Olympic bid - in March when the payment was reported by French daily Le Monde.

The IOC said then that its ethics commission was recommending an interim ban.

On Friday, the IOC said its ethics commission would meet on Monday to discuss his case.


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