Top Spanish official quits amid allegations

MADRID, Reuters

The vice-president of the Spanish Paralympic Committee (CPE) resigned on Thursday after allegations that Spain’s Olympic delegation included athletes with no handicaps to boost the country’s medal tally in Sydney.

Fernando Martin Vicente also resigned as president of the Spanish Federation for Mentally Handicapped Sports (FEDDI), the committee said in a statement.

The CPE this week opened an inquiry into allegations by a ember of the gold medal-winning basketball team, Carlos Ribagorda, that he and nine team mates were not subjected to any medical or psychological tests to check their eligibilty.

Ribagorda, a journalist, claimed he played for the basketball team for over two years but had no mental handicap.

Vicente had previously said the Spanish mentally handicapped athletes had passed the necessary tests.

The CPE said the inquiry would continue to investigate all the mentally handicapped Spanish participants at the games in Australia in October.

The games were Spain’s most successful Paralympics. The team won 107 medals.