February 17, 2018 / 4:58 AM / 8 months ago

Olympics-Games organizers wanted to keep IOC member Pengilly in Korea

PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (Reuters) - Pyeongchang winter Games organizers wanted to keep International Olympic Committee member Adam Pengilly in South Korea following an altercation with a security guard earlier this week, IOC spokesman Mark Adams said on Saturday.

Briton Pengilly, a former Olympic skeleton competitor whose term on the Olympic body ends on Feb. 25, was ordered to leave the Games on Thursday after the incident for which he later apologized. He left South Korea shortly after.

“Games organizers (POCOG) asked for him not to leave the country,” Adams told reporters, adding that Pengilly’s behavior had angered the Koreans, who have since accepted an apology from the IOC.

“There were bruises and scratches mentioned in the police report. There was a discussion (between POCOG and IOC) and it was agreed that this (him leaving) was appropriate.”

There is CCTV footage of the incident, officials have said, but so far it has not been made publicly available. Adams said he had not seen it.

It was not yet clear what exactly happened on Thursday at the IOC hotel where Pengilly was staying along with his other IOC colleagues and whether there was any physical contact between him and the guard.

Pengilly, an IOC athletes’ commission member, vehemently denied any such contact with the guard who, according to the Briton, fell in his attempt to chase him after he refused to stop and show his accreditation.

The former Olympian, who also sits on the World Anti-Doping Foundation Board, said he had tried to run away.

“Adam Pengilly agreed that he acted poorly, agreed he had sworn, agreed that there was an altercation,” Adams said. “He left, he apologized and he said it was poor behavior.”

The IOC member swiftly appeared before the IOC Ethics commission after the incident and was told to leave.

Pengilly, a former world championship silver medalist, could now face further sanctions from the International Bobsled and Skeleton Federation, of which he is a vice president. The IBSF also apologized to organizers on Friday.

Pengilly, also a member of the British Olympic Association (BOA) board, was the only IOC member to vote against his organization’s decision in 2016 not to issue a blanket ban on Russians for the Rio de Janeiro Olympics over the extensive doping scandal.

Reporting by Karolos Grohmann; editing by Sudipto Ganguly

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