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2012 SUMMER OLYMPICS --- NOTEBOOK: Cyclist dies after being struck by Olympic bus in London carrying media; black market ticket ring busted

A police officer stands at the scene where the driver of an official Olympic bus carrying journalists has been arrested after a bicyclist was hit and killed near the Olympic Park in Stratford, London, on Wednesday.

A police officer stands at the scene where the driver of an official Olympic bus carrying journalists has been arrested after a bicyclist was hit and killed near the Olympic Park in Stratford, London, on Wednesday.

LONDON — A double-decker bus carrying journalists at the London Olympics hit and killed a bicyclist Wednesday night, police and organizers said.

The Metropolitan Police said the cyclist, 28, was pronounced dead half an hour after the accident near the boundary of Olympic Park, the complex surrounding Olympic Stadium. Police said a man in his mid-60s was arrested at the scene on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and is currently in custody at an east London police station.

The accident happened near facilities for Paralympic athletes and the Olympic Velodrome. Bus transportation in and out of the park was halted for more than two hours. Police said no one aboard the bus was reported injured.

“The police are investigating the accident, and our thoughts are with the cyclist’s family,” the London Olympic organizing committee said in a statement.

Journalists covering Olympic events Wednesday night were told that media shuttle buses were suspended for the evening and were given other ways of getting to venues and hotels.

British cyclist Bradley Wiggins, who won gold in the time-trial race earlier Wednesday, said the death on the doorstep of the Olympics underscored the dangers of cycling in urban Britain.

“It’s dangerous, and London is a busy city,” said Wiggins, who also won the Tour de France last month. “I haven’t lived in London for 10 to 15 years now, and it’s got a lot busier since I was riding a bike as a kid round here.”

“But at the end of the day we’ve all got to co-exist on the roads,” he said. “So there’s got to be a bit of give and take.”


BLACK MARKET OLYMPIC TICKET RING BUSTED:

LONDON — A black market operation in London Olympics tickets has been stopped and buyers of 20,000 seats will be denied entry to venues, the government said Wednesday.

Britain’s Office of Fair Trading (OFT) said a joint operation with police had shut down websites run by Euroteam, an unauthorized ticket trader based in Oslo, Norway.

Euroteam had obtained some 5,000 real tickets for the games illegally. Some of those tickets were seized by police in Oslo this week, and appeared to have been supplied to Euroteam from eastern Europe, Norway’s most senior Olympic official told The Associated Press.

“We think that they are coming from two countries in eastern Europe,” said Gerhard Heiberg, a member of the International Olympic Committee. “This is not a good case. We hate that it has happened in Norway.”

Heiberg said it was not clear if the seized tickets were sold to the black market by international sports officials.

London Games tickets are valid only when obtained through authorized outlets or are allotted to the so-called “Olympic family,” which includes national Olympic committees, sports federations, sponsors and athletes.

The OFT, Britain’s consumer protection service, said the investigation led Euroteam and its director Andreas Gyrre to make a deal at a court in London. It said Euroteam would “provide a full refund to any of their customers who either do not receive their tickets or are refused entry to an event,” the government body said in a statement.

Gyrre did not immediately respond to a message from The AP requesting comment.

Euroteam wrote to customers this week explaining that “a lot” of their tickets had been confiscated as part of British efforts to stifle black market sales.

Heiberg said the IOC would “want to investigate what has happened and stop it.”

The IOC is already reviewing evidence provided by The Sunday Times which alleged that dozens of Olympic officials across the world had offered to sell their allocated tickets to the newspaper’s undercover reporters who were posing as black market agents.