Two U.S. Swimmers Pulled Off Plane Amid Investigation
The U.S. swimming team’s Ryan Lochte has started a firestorm with allegations that he and other members of his team were robbed at gunpoint while in Rio de Janiero for the 2016 Summer Olympics. With questions beginning to rise about the truthfulness of Lochte’s claims, the Brazilian Sporting Events Court ordered that the swimmers’ passports be temporarily confiscated.
Although Lochte had already fled back to the United States, two of the three swimmers he claimed to have been robbed with him, Gunner Bentz and Jack Conger, were taken off a plane headed for the States. The fourth swimmer, Jimmy Feigen had booked a flight online but never showed up. Bentz and Conger were eventually released by Brazilian authorities “with the understanding that they would continue their discussions about the incident on Thursday,” said U. S. Olympic Committee spokesman Patrick Sandusky.
According to the Brazilian Court’s statement, Brazilian judge Keyla Blanc de Cnop said Lochte and Feigen gave conflicting accounts of the robbery. Also, the swimmers claimed to have been robbed after exiting a night club at 4 a.m. However, security camera footage outside of the club shows them leaving at a different time.
There are several other questionable parts of the swimmers’ testimony. Lochte reported that there was a single robber; Feigen said there was more than one. Lochte said his wallet was taken but was later spotted with it while going through security. Lochte also initially said the gun was put to his forehead, but later claimed it was only pointed in his general direction.
In perhaps the most shocking contradiction, Lochte first said that the robbers posed as police and pulled over the taxi the swimmers were in. In another account, he purports that they were at a gas station and got back in the taxi when the robbers approached and ordered them to get on the ground.
The three swimmers who are still in Brazil could face up to six months in prison if they are found to have provided authorities with false information.