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VANOC, Interpol cracked Olympic ticket ring

Working with VANOC and Interpol, Vancouver police busted a fraudulent Olympic ticket-purchasing ring during the 2010 Games, a high-ranking VPD officer revealed yesterday.

Working with VANOC and Interpol, Vancouver police busted a fraudulent Olympic ticket-purchasing ring during the 2010 Games, a high-ranking VPD officer revealed yesterday.

Presenting an Olympic policing wrap-up to the Vancouver Police Board, Deputy Chief Steve Sweeney said four Latvians were arrested for allegedly using stolen credit cards to purchase tickets off VANOC’s resale site with the intention of reselling them.

“There were several hundred (tickets) that we were aware of,” Sweeney said.

“We got ahead of it before the tickets got into distribution. They were arrested trying to pick up the tickets.”

Other scams during the Olympics included renting out places that people didn’t own and a 300 per cent increase in counterfeit Canadian and U.S. currency.

He clarified the later, saying it jumped to 150 occurrences during the Games, up from about 50 normally.

There was virtually no counterfeit 2010 merchandise.

Overall, crime saw a slight decrease during the Winter Olympics, dropping in almost every category.

Exceptions included a 70 per cent increase in sexual offences (there were 27) and a 36 per cent increase in assaults.

The number worked out to about six more assaults a day, which wasn’t bad, Sweeney said, considering the 150,000 revellers Downtown.

The costs to Vancouver of policing will be on, or slightly under, the $11-million budgeted, Sweeney added.