Third Irish Olympic Council chief wanted by police in Brazil over the illegal sale of Rio 2016 tickets 

  • A third Irishman is wanted in connection with the Rio ticket scandal 
  • Police want to arrest the sports director of the Olympic Council of Ireland  
  • Martin Burke could be extradited to Brazil where he could face charges
  • He would join OCI’s chief Patrick Hickey and THG executive Kevin Mallon
Martin Burke the sports director of the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) is now wanted by Brazilian authorities 

Martin Burke the sports director of the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) is now wanted by Brazilian authorities 

Police in Brazil are seeking an arrest warrant for a third Irishman wanted in connection with the alleged illegal sale of tickets for the Rio de Janeiro Olympic Games.

Detectives said on Thursday that they want to question Martin Burke the sports director of the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI).

Burke returned to Ireland soon after the games finished last month.

However OCI president Patrick Hickey (71), and THG Sports executive Kevin James Mallon (36), were arrested in Brazil and are set to stand trial in the South American nation after being charged with ticket touting, conspiracy and ambush marketing on Tuesday.

The pair have been released on bail and deny any wrongdoing but they’ve had their passports confiscated by police. Should they be found guilty of their charges they could face up to ten years in prison. 

Hickey, who has temporarily resigned from his post in light of the investigation, was embarrassingly arrested by authorities in his hotel room during the Olympics last month. 

An OCI spokeswoman told the BBC that Brazilian police were now seeking a warrant for Burke’s arrest.

‘The OCI has not been contacted by the Rio authorities with regard to Mr Burke nor indeed has Mr Burke been contacted by the authorities,’ she said.

Tickets for numerous events at the Rio 2016  Games are presented by police after they were seized from one of the directors of THG Sports and Kevin Mallon, on August 8

Tickets for numerous events at the Rio 2016 Games are presented by police after they were seized from one of the directors of THG Sports and Kevin Mallon, on August 8

‘Mr Burke returned to Ireland from the Rio Games with the Irish Olympic team.’

Brazilian police also said that they want to speak with the president of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Thomas Bach, but were treating him as a witness, not a suspect, after his named appeared a number of times in email exchanges Hickey.

‘We are interested in talking to Thomas Bach, he has already been cited several times,’ said Ronaldo Oliveira, the head of specialized operations at the Civil Police said.

‘He could very much help clarify the work of the Civil Police to settle some doubts because he was mentioned in several emails. It is important that we can interview him, and various other people’ 

Hickey is said to have received some 296 tickets for numerous at events at the Rio Olympics from the president of the IOC.

Patrick Hickey looking on during a judo event match during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on August 7  just two weeks before he was arrested

Patrick Hickey looking on during a judo event match during the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on August 7  just two weeks before he was arrested

Mallon was arrested with 823 tickets in his possession while entertaining ticket holders at a hospitality venue owned by ticket re-seller, Carton, on August 5. 

‘THG (a sports event ticket vendor) purchased 177 tickets from Cartan worth US $ 53,000,’ said detective Aloysio Falcão, citing the documents.

‘Another document shows how many packages were sold: 1051 by THG. One victim paid USD$ 79.500, another USD$ 206,000,’ Falcão added.

A further eight people are wanted in connection with the scandal although aside from Hickey and Mallon they are not currently in Brazil.  

Worldnews | Mail Online