Salt Lake Olympic Bribery Scandal

Topics: Winter Olympic Games, Olympic Games, 2002 Winter Olympics Pages: 24 (8619 words) Published: February 24, 2013
The Olympic Games took place in the United States at Salt Lake City, Utah. The tournament opened on February 8, 2002 and closed on February 24, 2002. There were 77 NOCs, 2,399 athletes, 78 events, 22,000 volunteers and 8,730 of the media. “The Games saw the expansion of the Olympic program to 78 events, including the return of skeleton and the introduction of women’s bobsleighs. Athletes from a record 18 National Olympic Committees earned gold medals, including first-ever gold for China and Australia” ( The Olympic International Committee is the supreme authority of the entire Olympic Games, responsible for organizing and maintaining a successful event. “Acting as a catalyst for collaboration between all parties of the Olympic family, from the National Olympic Committees (NOCs), the International Sports Federations (IFs), the athletes, the Organizing Committees for the Olympic Games (OCOGs), to the TOP partners, broadcast partners and United Nations agencies, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) shepherds success through a wide range of programs and projects. On this basis, it ensures the regular celebration of the Olympic Games, supports all affiliated member organizations of the Olympic Movement and strongly encourages, by appropriate means, the promotion of the Olympic values”( In December of 1998, the U.S Department of Justice discovered that the Salt Lake Organizing Committee (SLOC)of the Games might have been involved in bribery acts with the International Olympic Committee. SLOC admitted paying IOC members relatives tuition and expenses. They also offered the members free healthcare services by paying for their plastic and medical surgeries. The U.S Department of Justice believed that all these bribery allegations were done to ensure that the 2002 Olympics would come to Utah. The objective of this paper is to evaluate using the three values of law, ethics and social responsibility whether the Salt Lake Organizing Committee which is responsible of organizing sports events in the city was legal, ethical and socially responsible in organizing the Winter Olympics of Salt Lake 2002.

It is important to discuss slightly the background information about the issue in this case. The SLOC is responsible for Utah’s sports events and having a clean reputation is important for the city’s future as an Olympic host. The SLOC was accused by the U.S Justice Department of being involved in bribery acts with the IOC to buy votes for the upcoming Olympic event, which eventually took place in 2002. The investigators at justice were trying to find out if SLOC violated the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FCPA. The investigators were also trying to determine whether the SLOC have committed tax fraud by misusing exempt money to purchase gifts for IOC members’ relatives. It is reported that more than 400 corporations admitted making questionable or illegal payments. The companies, most of them voluntarily, have reported paying out well in excess of $300 million in corporate funds to foreign government officials, politicians, and political parties. These corporations have included some of the largest and most widely held public companies in the United States; over 117 of them rank in the top Fortune 500 industries. B. STATEMENT OF RELEVANT LEGAL PRINCIPLES AND RULE OF LAW

When the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, FCPA, was enforced, many were caught in the act of bribery and for that they were fined and some were sent to jail. This act made a lot of companies in the United States and outside the country to start investigating in order to find these criminals that threaten businesses in our society. The abuses ran the gamut from bribery of high foreign officials to secure some type of favorable action by a foreign government to so-called facilitating payments that allegedly were made to ensure that government functionaries discharged certain ministerial or...
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