IOC to study Schmitt plagiarism case

Olympic officials will examine the plagiarism case that led Pal

Schmitt to resign as Hungary’s president and consider whether the

longtime IOC member should be disciplined.

Schmitt quit as president Monday because of a scandal involving

a doctoral dissertation he wrote 20 years ago about the modern

Olympics. Last week, his 1992 doctorate was revoked after a

university committee found most of his thesis had been copied from

the work of two other authors.

Schmitt, who has been an International Olympic Committee member

since 1983, could face an ethics inquiry by the IOC and possible

sanctions.

”The IOC will ask to receive the reports related to this case,

study them and then consider whether any action needs to be

taken,” the committee said in a statement.

Schmitt, who won team fencing gold medals at the 1968 and 1972

Olympics, ran unsuccessfully for IOC president in 2001. He finished

fourth in the election won by Jacques Rogge.

Schmitt served on the policymaking IOC executive board from

1991-99 and was a vice president from 1995-99. He is current

chairman of the IOC’s sport and environment commission, a post he

has held since 1995. Schmitt also previously served as president of

national Olympic committee and the World Olympians Association.

The case could wind up before the IOC ethics commission, which

would make recommendations to the executive board. Ethics sanctions

can include a warning, a suspension or expulsion.

In December, the IOC’s longest serving member —

95-year-old Joao Havelange of Brazil — resigned before facing

suspension in a decade-old kickback case dating to his days as

president of FIFA. Two senior IOC African members received a

warning and a reprimand.

Former US Olympic Committee president Sandra Baldwin stepped

down as an IOC member in 2002 after admitting she lied about her

academic credentials. Four IOC members resigned in 1999 after being

implicated in the Salt Lake City bid scandal. Six others were

expelled.