Bandits are said to have robbed US swimmers in Rio – the robbery is exposed as a lie shortly afterwards. Rio is happy that others are criticized.
No gold for this: Swimmer Ryan Lochte after his confession Photo: dpa
It is really cheeky, what the four US swimmers have afforded themselves. Since there is always talk about robberies and security problems at the Olympics anyway, they probably thought their crude story would not attract further attention. They therefore claimed that bandits disguised as police officers had attacked and robbed them in a cab late at night. Swimming star Ryan Lochte even babbled about a gun to his temple. The organizers apologized to the U.S. federation, it was a found food for the sensational press of all places.
In reality, the gentlemen had only been too drunk to open the toilet door at a gas station. So apparently they kicked the door in because of the full bladder. The security staff thought this was excessive and asked the vandals to pay for the damage. So did the swimmers, eventually the guards showed their weapons. It was precisely from this scene that the U.S. boys made up their robbery.
Stupidly, the four swimmers were filmed, both at the gas station and on arrival at the Olympic village. They were far too relaxed on their return, which is why the investigation was stepped up, a police spokesman said.
Since the statements of the alleged victims were also poorly matched, a judge ordered a quick crackdown. Two of the miscreants were arrested from a plane ready for takeoff. Lochte was the only one of the four who had already returned to the USA, where he continued to tell the tall tale. After their passports were confiscated, the swimmers and the federation changed their minds – and confessed the tall tale.
Or they were annoyed by Brazil
In the meantime, the U.S. Olympic Committee has apologized to the hosts. Committee head Scott Blackmun spoke of "disturbing torment" that had been unnecessary. James Feigen, the only one of the four still in Brazil, also apologized. He agreed with authorities to pay about $10,000 to an NGO to be allowed to leave the country. And he accused Lochte, a six-time medal winner, of deliberately tearing down a billboard during the riot. According to James Feigen, they gave the security guards the necessary change so that they would not immediately inform the police.
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It is not yet clear whether the other three will be charged with pretending to commit a crime. "The only true thing about their testimony was that they were drunk," summed up the police chief.
That could be. Or they were so fed up with Brazil, with the allegedly unfinished accommodations and other circumstances, that they wanted to get one over on the country. It seems arrogant to tell such an inconsistent story and bet that the hosts will simply wave it through. In Brazil, the excitement is great.
The tenor: "Typical gringos, they let themselves have a good time with us and then follow suit. There is almost a little satisfaction that finally the others are being criticized instead of the Brazilian organization of the games or the whistles of the fans. In the media, the case of the U.S. swimmers is almost given higher priority than the competitions themselves. At last, it is about the failure of others, while their own authorities reacted correctly. This Olympic episode makes clear with how many nationalistic tones these games are charged, how important it is to distinguish the own and the foreign.