The saga of the robbery Ryan Lochte and other American swimmers reported has gotten even weirder.
A Brazilian judge’s order Wednesday to keep Lochte and fellow swimmer Jimmy Feigen in the country following questions about their robbery report now appears to have been extended to stop swimmers Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger (pictured at left and right above, they were also with Lochte and Feigen when the alleged robbery took place) from leaving Brazil.
Yahoo Sports’ Pat Forde and Eric Adelson reported Wednesday night that Bentz and Conger were detained at the Rio airport:
American swimmers Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger have been detained at the Rio de Janeiro International Airport as they were attempting to fly home. The two originally cleared customs but were prevented from leaving the country.
“We can confirm that Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz were removed from their flight to the United States by Brazilian authorities,” USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky said in a statement. “We are gathering further information.”
The two were part of the incident in which teammates Ryan Lochte and Jimmy Feigen filed a police report alleging that they were robbed at gunpoint. That report started a firestorm and further heightened security concerns, but Brazilian officials started questioning Lochte’s account of what happened in the past couple of days.
Lochte, who was the key figure in most of the coverage of this, is reportedly already back in the U.S., but it’s unclear if Feigen has left Brazil. Brazilian judge Keyla Blank ordered the seizure of passports from Feigen and Lochte Wednesday to determine if charges of filing a false police report were warranted after “inconsistencies in their testimony,” but it’s also unclear what extended that order to Bentz and Conger. Regardless, detaining Bentz and Conger is certainly going to stir up some controversy between the U.S. and Brazil, and it may prompt further investigations into just what happened in this alleged robbery. It will be fascinating to watch and see what the next step in this saga is; it’s already been one of the weirdest stories of these Games.