InsidetheGames.com reports that Papa Massata Diack, son of Lamine Diack, former president of the IAAF, has appeared in court in Dakar, Senegal in connection with corruption charges laid in 2015. The development could mean Diack, Jr. will be extradited to France in time for the planned January 13, 2020 trial of him and his father.
Diack, Sr., who was IAAF president for 16 years before current president Sebastian Coe was first elected in 2015, is accused of accepting €1 million (around $1.5 million) in bribes from Russian athletes to hide positive drug tests, and has been under house arrest in France since the charges were laid in 2015. Diack, Jr. is accused of money laundering and offering bribes.
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It's been a bad day for the Diack family. First, Lamine Diack, the Senegalese former head of world athletics body the IAAF was accused of "conspiracy and corruption" in a damning report by the World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada). Shortly afterwards, the international police body Interpol issued a notice calling for the arrest of his son Papa Massata Diack on charges of bribery, money-laundering and corruption. The notice alerts Interpol's member countries, which include Senegal where he lives, that he is wanted by French police. Papa Massata was named alongside his brother Khalil in the Wada report, which accused the pair of trying to extort money from Turkey's Asli Alptekin Cakir, winner of the Olympic 1500 metres gold medal at London 2012. The report says that Papa Massata Diack asked the athlete for €650,000 ($700,000, £490,000) to avoid a potential drugs ban. Last month, he said he totally rejected accusations by French prosecutors that he had any role in alleged extortion and bribery. #LamineDiack #IAAF #Wada #doping #Interpol #Senegal #PapaMassata #Diack #Turkey @aslickr07
For Diack, Jr. to have appeared before a judge in Senegal is a significant development, since his whereabouts were previously uncertain. He was believed to be in Senegal, but the chances of his being extradited to face trial in France were believed to be slim. He may yet be tried in absentia. The IAAF and the IOC were believed to be pushing the Senegalese authorities for his extradition.
Lamine Diack was believed to be using Russian money in exchange for covering up positive drug tests to influence the results of elections in his home country of Senegal.