IOC member suspended

LAUSANNE (AP) – Park Yong-Sung of South Korea has been suspended as a member of the International Olympic Committee pending the final outcome of his corruption case. Park, the former chairman of the Doosan Group, was convicted last month of embezzling millions in a family feud over control of South Korea’s oldest conglomerate. The IOC executive board «decided to provisionally deprive Mr Yong-Sung Park of all the rights, prerogatives and functions deriving from his IOC membership whilst the ethics commission continues its inquiry and until the judicial authorities have rendered a final judgment.» The IOC ethics commission will wait for a final verdict on any appeals by Park. After that, he would face a possible recommendation for expulsion. Expulsion requires a two-thirds vote of the full IOC. The next IOC general assembly is in 2007. Three-year sentence Park was given a three-year suspended jail sentence and an 8-billion won (6.9-million-euro) fine by the Seoul District Court. Park’s three brothers were also convicted in the case. The 65-year-old Park is president of the International Judo Federation, a post that gives him automatic IOC membership. Other suspensions Another IOC member, Guy Drut, was suspended in December pending the outcome of his corruption case in France. Drut, a former French sports minister and the 110-meter hurdles champion at the 1976 Montreal Olympics, was convicted of benefiting from a fictitious job at a construction company. Former IOC vice president Kim Un-Yong of South Korea resigned last year rather than face expulsion. He was suspended by the IOC last year in connection with corruption charges in South Korea. Bulgarian member Ivan Slavkov was expelled last year after being implicated in a BBC television documentary on alleged Olympic corruption. Indonesia’s Mohamad «Bob» Hasan, who was jailed in a scam involving a forest-mapping project in the 1990s, was kicked out in August 2004. In addition, six IOC members were expelled and four resigned in 1998 and 1999 following the Salt Lake City vote-buying scandal.