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DOJ investigating global sports organizations for corruption

Lee Hee-beom, President of the PyeongChang Organising Committee for the 2018 Winter Olympics.
Lee Hee-beom, President of the PyeongChang Organising Committee for the 2018 Winter Olympics. Photo: Milos Bicanski / Getty Images

Grand jury subpoenas have been issued in "a far-reaching investigation of international sports corruption," the New York Times reports.

Why it matters: The DOJ is investigating "possible racketeering, money laundering and honest services fraud charges," over track and field championships and "bids for various other elite competitions." They're seeking information from major sports organizations like the International Olympic Committee and FIFA.

  • Former president of the IAAF and member of the International Olympic Committee, Lamine Diack, was detained by France in 2015 and "accused of accepting bribes for covering up the doping violations of Russian athletes," per NYT.
  • Per the Times, Diack's arrest led Brazilian officials to arrest the head of Brazil's Olympic committee, Carlos Arthur Nuzman. There was reason to suspect that Rio de Janeiro's bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics "was helped by bribery to secure supportive votes from members of the International Olympic Committee."
  • This comes days before the beginning of the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, and in the middle of a huge scandal with former Olympic gymnastics doctor Larry Nassar.

Go deeper: Big tech is eyeing live sports broadcasts.

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