The family of Patrick Hickey have issued a staunch defence of the legal action taken against the Olympic Council of Ireland (OCI) to stop them continuing a review into ticketing arrangements at Rio 2016, claiming that it was likely to be "worthless" in the view of their solicitors.
Hickey was arrested in August as part of an investigation by Brazilian police into the alleged mis-selling of tickets for the Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.
Following his arrest Hickey, who denies all wrongdoing, temporarily stood down as President of the OCI, which he has led since 1988.
On Wednesday (November 2), the Executive Committee of the OCI revealed that the review - which is being carried out by Grant Thornton - will now only be completed following the conclusion of criminal proceedings against Hickey.
It will be passed directly to Judge Carroll Moran, who is leading the non-statutory inquiry into ticketing arrangements.
In a statement, Hickey’s family said any findings from the Grand Thornton report "could not be deemed conclusive" and are "inappropriate under all the circumstances until the Brazilian issues are resolved by the appropriate Brazilian Court".
"We, the Hickey family on behalf of our father and grandfather Pat Hickey, have retained the services of a prominent firm of solicitors and eminent counsel, both senior and junior counsel, to advise on what has come to be known as the Rio Ticketing Issue," the statement read.
"Our father relies on the advice of his solicitors and counsel.
"At all times, Pat Hickey has fully supported the judicial inquiry being undertaken by the eminent Jurist Judge Carroll Moran S.C. and he confirmed that he will fully co-operate with this inquiry.
"As early as September 9, 2016, our father’s solicitor advised the solicitors acting for the OCI that they expected the judicial inquiry to be full, complete and comprehensive and that the inquiry to be conducted by Grant Thornton was in the view of our solicitors likely to be worthless.
"Notwithstanding the view expressed, Pat Hickey, on the advice of his lawyers, sought assurances from the OCI solicitors and lawyers in Brazil that would protect his constitutional entitlement, the principle of fair procedures and the right to a fair trial.
"Regrettably the lawyers employed by the OCI were not able to fulfil the assurances sought."
Hickey has reportedly been charged with criminal organisation, ticket touting, ambush marketing, larceny, money laundering and tax evasion.
The 71-year-old, who is still in Brazil after his passport was confiscated, could face up to seven years in jail if he is found guilty.
Hickey has also temporarily stood down as President of the European Olympic Committees.
A main reason behind stopping the Grant Thornton enquiry was that eight contributors have purportedly said they are unwilling to participate before the outcome of the Brazilian legal proceedings.
"Regrettably on November 1, 2016, to protect our father Pat Hickey’s constitutional rights, fair procedures and an entitlement to a fair trial, solicitors on behalf of Pat Hickey put the OCI on notice by letter that if they continued with their deliberations in the absence of evidence and statements from eight (at least) participants, our father Pat Hickey had no alternative but to make an application for an injunction restraining Grant Thornton and the OCI from infringing our dad’s constitutional rights and entitlements," added the statement.
"Critical to the demand to stop the 'Grant Thornton Inquiry' was an issue that Grant Thornton were not involved in conducting an independent review and the unwillingness of at least eight contributors to participate in the review at this early stage pending the outcome in Brazil."
It was claimed at the start of last month's EOC General Assembly in Belarus' capital Minsk that Hickey should be returned home from Brazil to Ireland otherwise his health could be seriously affected.
Hickey was taken to hospital complaining of heart problems following his arrest in Rio de Janeiro and spent two days there before being transferred to the notorious Bangu Prison.
He was held there for 10 days before being released, although he is still banned from leaving Brazil.
The family statement concludes by saying that "while always respecting the rule of law and justice system in Brazil, it is our solemn wish that our dad and grandfather is allowed back to Ireland to receive urgent medical treatment for his heart condition".
"This, above all else, is our priority," it reads.
Crisis Management Committee chair Ciarán Ó Catháin reportedly become the latest member of the OCI's Executive Committee to announce his resignation yesterday.
He follows OCI honorary treasurer Kevin Kilty and Football Association of Ireland head and OCI vice-president John Delaney in leaving the organisation, with suggestions of a rift between supporters and opponents of Hickey.