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Ryan Lochte has said sorry to Brazilians after “over-exaggerating” claims he was robbed at gunpoint while at the Rio Olympics.

The Olympic swimmer had claimed that he and a group of three other US swimmers had been robbed at a gas station.

However, CCTV footage contradicted Ryan Lochte’s story, showing the men had vandalized the gas station.

Ryan Lochte told Globo TV, Brazil’s largest broadcaster, that he had not lied over what happened.

“I wasn’t lying to a certain extent,” he said.

Photo Globo TV

Photo Globo TV

“I over-exaggerated what was happening to me.”

He added that he was sorry, saying: “Brazil doesn’t deserve that.”

The International Olympic Committee (IOC) has set up a disciplinary commission to investigate the incident and the four swimmers’ behavior.

News of the alleged robbery emerged through Ryan Lochte’s mother on August 14.

Ryan Lochte then gave an account of the events, saying he and the other swimmers were returning by cab from a club in the early hours of the morning when they were robbed at gunpoint by men who forced the vehicle to pull over.

However, Brazilian police said a day later that there were inconsistencies in the men’s accounts.

On August 17, two of the swimmers, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger, were taken off a US-bound plane at Rio de Janeiro airport and questioned by police.

Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger were eventually allowed to leave Brazil. Another swimmer, Jimmy Feigen agreed to pay $11,000 to a Brazilian charity after the incident.

On August 19, Jack Conger said in a statement that Ryan Lochte had pulled a metal advertisement in a frame to the ground, but Conger said he was “unsure why”.

Jack Conger also said Ryan Lochte began yelling at guards for an unknown reason. The men then agreed to pay the guards for the damage.

Rio de Janeiro’s mayor Eduardo Paes had told media he felt nothing but “shame and contempt” towards the athletes for their portrayal of what happened.

In a separate interview with NBC, part of which also aired on August 20, Ryan Lochte said he felt “hurt” watching footage of his team-mates being taken off their plane.

Ryan Lochte had already returned to the US from Brazil.

“I mean, I let my team down and you know, I don’t want them to think I left them out to dry,” he said.

However, Ryan Lochte maintained the men were threatened and made to pay: “Whether you call it a robbery or whether you call it extortion or us just paying for the damages, we don’t know. All we know is that there was a gun pointed in our direction and we were demanded to give money.”


Actress Esther Williams has died in Los Angeles aged 91.

The swimming champion-turned-movie star’s spokesman said Esther Williams died peacefully in her sleep. She had been in declining health due to old age.

A national swimming champion by the time she was 16, Esther Williams’ success led to a career in Hollywood “aqua-musicals” designed just for her, in the 1940s.

She became known as Hollywood’s Mermaid, starring in films including Dangerous When Wet and Easy to Wed.

Esther Williams became one of cinema’s biggest box-office stars in the 1940s and 1950s, famously appearing in spectacular swimsuits that capitalized on her physical beauty.

Her films were typically lavish song-and-dance affairs, following the same formula of romance, music and comedy – held together by a lightweight plot that provided infinite excuses for the actress to get into the water.

Esther Williams has died in Los Angeles aged 91

Esther Williams has died in Los Angeles aged 91

Finales usually featured Esther Williams diving into a pool or lagoon and surfacing to a crescendo of music, with water glistening on her beaming face.

Her string of successful films included Thrill of a Romance, Fiesta, On an Island With You and Duchess of Idaho.

Co-stars included Gene Kelly, Frank Sinatra, Red Skelton, Ricardo Montalban and Howard Keel.

“I look at that girl and I like her,” Esther Williams said on watching her films decades later, Reuters reports.

“I can see why she became popular with audiences. There was an unassuming quality about her. She was certainly wholesome,” she said.

In the 1950s she attempted to branch out into non-swimming roles, but met with little success.

“I guess what MGM found was that my audience wanted that bathing suit,” Esther Williams said, when her autobiography was released in 1999.

“And you know, when Cinemascope came in and you’ve got that water all wrapped around you and they’d do big close-ups of me… I think it had too much pleasure connected with it for them to change it.”

Esther Williams retired from the movies in 1962, following her marriage to her third husband, Hollywood playboy Fernando Lamas.

In her later years Esther Williams hosted swimming events for ABC-TV’s coverage of the 1984 Olympic Games and turned her attention to business, launching her own line of swimwear.

Esther Williams was married to Fernando Lamas for 20 years until his death in 1982. She and her last husband Edward Bell lived in Los Angeles’ Beverly Hills.

Her autobiography also told of many romances, including one with actor Jeff Chandler.

According to Esther Williams, she discovered he was a cross-dresser and walked out, explaining: “Jeff, you’re too big for polka dots.”

Several of Jeff Chandler’s colleagues denied Esther Williams’ claims when the book was published.

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Philippe Croizon, a Frenchman who lost his limbs in an accident, has completed the first part of his challenge to swim between five continents.

Philippe Croizon swam from Papua New Guinea to Indonesia with long-distance swimmer Arnaud Chassery and a local man who joined them to show his support.

He uses prosthetic limbs with flippers attached and took seven-and-a-half hours to swim the stretch.

“It was very, very hard,” he said after the event, which involved crossing 20 km (12 miles) between two points on New Guinea island which is shared between the two countries.

“It took us an hour-and-a-half more than we expected because we had to swim against the currents,” he said.

Philippe Croizon swam from Papua New Guinea to Indonesia with long-distance swimmer Arnaud Chassery and a local man who joined them to show his support

Philippe Croizon swam from Papua New Guinea to Indonesia with long-distance swimmer Arnaud Chassery and a local man who joined them to show his support

He said they did not come across any sharks or jellyfish, but were joined by a Papua New Guinean man named Zet Tampa, who swam with them to show solidarity, Philippe Croizon tweeted.

The swim had been postponed as Philippe Croizon waited for a permit to enter Indonesia, which he received late on Wednesday.

Philippe Croizon lost his limbs 18 years ago while adjusting a TV aerial on a roof.

In 1994, he lost his limbs after receiving an electric charge of 20,000 volts which fused him to the metal ladder on which he was standing.

Philippe Croizon would have been killed instantly – but another massive electric charge snapped him back to life, although he was so seriously burnt that both his arms and his legs had to be amputated.

He says he was inspired to swim while in hospital. He saw a documentary on television about an Englishwoman who had swum the English Channel earlier that year.

In 2010, Philippe Croizon became the first limbless man to cross the 34 km Channel between France and England – a feat that had only been achieved by some 900 other, able-bodied, swimmers.

The other crossings Philippe Croizon has planned are: the shark-infested Gulf of Aqaba in Jordan to the Egyptian coast in June (the Asia to Africa stretch); the busy shipping straits between Gibraltar and Morocco in July; and the icy Bering Strait between Alaska and Russia in August.

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