How a Brazilian journalist played central role in the arrest of Pat Hickey 6 years ago

How a Brazilian journalist played central role in the arrest of Pat Hickey

Pat Hickey is no fan of journalists. Unless they are fan journalists.

His arrest on Wednesday by the Rio fraud squad on charges of ticket-touting, forming a cartel and illicit marketing was met with something resembling professionally restrained glee by many who have had run-ins with a powerful sports administrator who has seen fit to put manners on several sports ministers down through the years.

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Most kept their feelings to themselves. Those who have left journalism to pursue highly successful careers as writers of Dubarry-based fiction allowed themselves a gleeful tweet or two.

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Former Sunday Tribune sports writer Howard, the creator of Ross O'Carroll-Kelly, will surely have enjoyed the contribution of Jamil Chade, a correspondent with newspaper O Estado de S. Paulo.

It was Chade who broke the story of Hickey's arrest at his hotel in the early hours of Wednesday morning and the journalist has been on top of things ever since. Over night he tweeted a picture of a closing ceremony ticket found in Hickey's room - a ticket with a value of 1,400 Reals (€380).

 

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Earlier in the day Chade's access to Hickey's hotel, which is also the IOC headquarters in Rio, was revoked following his reporting of the story. It was later returned.

However on Newstalk's Off The Ball last night, Chade revealed that he in fact took an active role in the police investigation - helping them to identify the source of the tickets seized when they arrested THG executive Thomas Mallon on 5th August.

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"This particular story began last week when the tickets were confiscated and the police actually had no ideas where the tickets came from. I requested that the police send me the tickets so I could at least take at look at them.

"When we actually got hold of these tickets it said "NOC Ireland", and of course by contacting the police back they had no idea what that meant. They had no idea what it meant in terms of suppliers of tickets, if it was a fan. The term 'NOC', National Olympic Committee, was not known to the local police," explained Chade.

"What happened after is the police started an entire new phase of the investigation, basically to try to find out the link between the NOC of Ireland and the people who were actually arrested initially. This is what led to the case today, the operation today."

Impressive work. Impressive access.

On the latest episode of the GAA Hour Hurling Show Wooly and the lads reflect on a monumental weekend of action. Listen below or subscribe here on iTunes.