Ryan Lochte changes robbery story; two U.S. swimmers pulled off plane for questioning

RIO DE JANEIRO, Aug. 18 (UPI) — Ryan Lochte is wanted for questioning and Brazilian authorities pulled two U.S. swimmers off their flight home Wednesday for questioning as the Olympians’ alleged robbery in Rio de Janeiro is now raising doubts.

Jack Conger and Gunnar Bentz were removed from their flight. A Brazilian judge issued search and seizure warrants for Lochte, who returned to the United States on Monday, and a fourth swim team member, James Feigen who is thought to still be in Brazil.

Bentz and Conger have been told they cannot leave Brazil until they make an official statement to police about the alleged robbery, said their attorney late Wednesday.

Brazilian officials are wondering about the details of the four men’s alleged robbery in Rio Sunday morning. The four said they were robbed during a taxi ride at gunpoint by men who at least appeared to be police officers, the U.S. Olympic Committee said Sunday. None of the athletes had their cell phones taken, a hot commodity for thieves in the city.

On Monday, the Rio 2016 organizing committee issued an apology to the athletes.

Lochte first denied the robbery took place, then said a robber put a gun to his head, then told NBC News on Wednesday night the man only pointed the gun in his direction.

Regardless, the Rio Summer Olympics have been dogged by reports of crime leading up and during the Games.

Police are examining video of the gas station where the four alleged the crime took place and they have not yet located the taxi driver.

“I can’t comment on contradictions in any stories, and I can’t refute any statements that were given,” said officer Alexandre Braga. “This case is delicate and receiving a lot of attention. We must be very careful.”

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