Top officials named in London Games ticket probe

Six top Olympic officials from four countries have been implicated in the supplying of black market tickets for the London Games, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) said.

The illegal sale of tickets for the 2012 Games was initially uncovered by a British newspaper mid-June who transferred their findings to the IOC ethics commission. The IOC's report released yesterday accused six people including Greek National Olympic Committee (NOC) president Spyros Capralos and his marketing chief Nicole Avramidou of breaching the IOC's code of conduct and "tarnishing the reputation of the Olympic movement".

Malta's NOC president Lino Farrugia and secretary general Joe Cassar were also implicated along with Serbia's NOC president Djordje Visacki and Lithuanian secretary general Vytautas Zubernis.

The IOC said however that the six could not be sanctioned under their rules. "The scope of the competence of the ethics code of the IOC allows the IOC to take an action against the body of the National committee, but for reasons due to legal issues, we have no authority on the people themself," explained IOC president Jacques Rogge.

"We think it could be changed in the ethics code but we have to respect the restrictions of the rules that we have set." The IOC urged the national Olympic committees and individuals concerned "to take the appropriate measures" or face the possibility of having their accreditation for the Olympic Games or other related events refused.

Meanwhile, the IOC promised to overhaul their system of allocating tickets for the 2016 Rio Games to avoid a repeat of the London situation.

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