Salt Lake City Olympic Bribery Probe Expands

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To "Higher, Faster, Stronger" add "More" -- as in more investigations, now that George Mitchell has agreed to head an inquiry into the Salt Lake City Olympic bribery scandal. The former Senate majority leader and Irish peace negotiator will lead the U.S. Olympic Committee's probe into whether the people who brought the 2002 Winter Games to Utah actually bought the games to Utah by showering International Olympic Committee officials with expensive gifts.

Of course, any punishment the Mitchell commission or the IOC hands down would be very small potatoes compared to federal penalties. The Justice Department is now looking into possible extortion and tax and wire fraud by Salt Lake City Olympic Committee officials. Making a federal case out of the scandal will mean showing that organizers broke the law by using tax-exempt money to buy the gifts or to finance scholarships for relatives of IOC members.