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Russian Olympic Committee President called accusations of judicial bribery at the winter olympics as "asininity"

01.08.2002 | Source:



President of the Russian Olympic Committee (ROC) Leonid Tyagachyov called the FBI accusations, concerning Alimzhan Takhtakhunov, who supposedly stood behind the judicial bribery in Figure Skating at the Salt Lake City Winter Olympic Games - 2002, as a "pure asininity".

"I can not imagine, why a man, who does not take interest in sports at all, would frame up the results," disclosed Tyagachyov, who is in Losanne /Switzerland/ at the present, in his telephone interview to a RIA Novosti correspondent. In his opinion, this situation is a "fake and a pure asininity".

Takhtakhunov was arrested in Italy on Wednesday with the help of the US Federal Bureau of Investigations.

Federal Prosecutor of the New York south district James Comey said that Takhtakhunov is accused of being in conspiracy with other people in order to make an "exchange" through the judicial bribery. The "exchange" meant that the French judge would give his voice to the Russian skaters in pair skating, and the Russian judge in his turn would give his voice to the French skaters in figure skating dance.

French skaters Marina Anisina and Gwendal Peizerat became Olympic champions in figure skating dance and Russian pair Yelena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze became champions in pair skating.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the FBI in a close cooperation with the Italian law-enforcement bodies, the Federal Prosecutor said. In particular, the Italian side was feeding the FBI with the records of Takhtakhunov's telephone conversations.

The USA law-enforcement bodies have been investigating closely Takhtakhunov's activities for more than a year, Comey said. "The USA has an interest for the investigation of the activities of the Russian organised crime, which is called now Eurasian," he stressed.

Referring to the US law-enforcement bodies, the American media call Takhtakhunov a "Russian gangster" and say that he is a member of the organised crime group and is also known as "Taiwanchik".


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