Ticket corruption claims probed
Jun 18 2012
A probe is under way into claims of widespread corruption among foreign agents and officials supplying tickets to the London Olympics.
The International Olympic Committee is threatening a radical shake-up of the way Olympic tickets are distributed among its member countries after a Sunday Times investigation suggested officials were offering thousands of top tickets on the black market.
London Olympics chief Lord Coe was dragged into the row after the newspaper secretly filmed Greek national Olympic committee president Spyros Caprolos claiming he had successfully lobbied him for more premium Olympic tickets on Greece's behalf. The London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games (Locog) has denied the claims.
The Sunday Times newspaper has presented a dossier of evidence on agents and officials controlling the tickets for 54 countries. Thousands of the best seats at the top events - including the 100m final - were up for sale after being siphoned off from official supplies held by overseas national Olympic committees (NOCs), the newspaper said.
National Olympic committees are forbidden to sell their tickets abroad or to anyone who plans to resell them. But The Sunday Times said undercover reporters posing as envoys of a Middle Eastern ticket tout found 27 officials and agents who were willing to do business.
According to the paper, these included one country's official ticket agency which The Sunday Times claimed offered category AA tickets, the best seats in the stadiums, to the fake Middle Eastern tout for up to £6,000 each. The IOC confirmed they were investigating the allegations and will consider a complete shake-up of how Olympic tickets are distributed among member countries.
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