According to the newspaper, no fewer than 27 licensed travel agents who distribute tickets in 54 nations are suspected of scalping the tickets for up to 10 times their worth. One of the agents allegedly involved is former Israeli Olympic swimmer Yoav Bruck, who currently serves as director of the ISSTA Sport travel agency.
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The "Sunday Times" report alleges that Bruck sold 525 tickets for premium seats for a combined 66,000 pounds.
"There aren't too many tickets left, but off the record – I can get anything," Bruck is shown saying in a clip taken by a concealed camera that was published along with the report. As a result of the article, the IOC has called an emergency meeting and made it clear that it viewed the situation with severity.
Former Olympian turned travel agent Bruck (Photo: Oren Aharoni)
"In light of claims that a number of Olympic committees and licensed ticket brokers cooperated to break the rules by agreeing to sell tickets outside their (designated) territory, inflating prices, or selling tickets to unlicensed brokers, the IOC has ordered an immediate investigation and has referred the allegations to the ethics council," the IOC stated.
ISSTA Sport responded by saying: "This is a sloppy, unreliable journalistic investigation about ISSTA Sport's role as a licensed Olympic ticket broker in Cyprus. The company operates in line with the rules and conditions of the organizing committee, enforces them rigorously and will continue to do so in the future. The company has never offered any service that does not comply with the rules and conditions of the IOC and all of its commercial activity is fully backed by the Olympic organizing committee."
The Israel Olympic Committee said that ISSTA Sport had signed an agreement with the organizing committee of the London Olympic Games in which all the terms, demands, and limitations were specified.
"We have no doubt that prior to signing the agreement, (the company) studied the terms and we believe that it is operating as per its commitments. The International Olympic Committee announced that it would investigation the allegation. The Israel Olympic Committee will act according to whatever instructions it receives from the IOC on the matter."