The police have not officially identified any of those said to have placed bets.
All information on alleged involvement in betting has come from
anonymous law enforcement sources.
GRETZKY UNDER ENEMY ATTACK
"I've done nothing wrong.
I'm going to Italy on Sunday.
I'm going to be with Team Canada."
The 2006 Winter Olympics being held in Turin, Italy will have opening ceremonies tonight [Friday, Feb 10, 2006] and the games will begin this weekend. A big part of those games for Canada will be hockey, skiing and skating. Our athletes excell in those sports and the Russians have been wanting to beat us for years.
In the 2002 Salt Lake City Winter Olympics the best female cross-country skier in the world - Canada's Beckie Scott - was blatantly cheated out of the gold medal by two Russian skiers who were proven to be using performance-enhancing drugs.
But did the Canadian government and the IOC (International Olympic Committee) come to her defense? No. On the contrary, they supported the cheating Russians by allowing them to stand on their pedestals to receive the gold and silver medals. Beckie Scott was relegated to bronze.
After the games were over Beckie Scott had to fight for her gold medal by pointing out the unfairness of cheaters getting the honour she had earned. Two years after she had skied the event she won her battle and a gold medal was placed around her neck. But the gold and silver medals were never taken from the Russians. See CANADA'S WINTER HEROES
The corruption of Olympic judges in figure skating events is also common knowledge. In Salt Lake City in 2002 the gold medal was awarded to the Russians instead of the Canadians* who obviously deserved it. The British judge who exposed vote-fixing between the Russians and the French was put through hell. A book's been written on the subject entitled On Edge: Backroom Dealing, Cocktail Scheming, Triple Axels, and How Top Skaters Got Screwed, by Jon Jackson a former high-ranking International Skating Union (ISU) official.
And now Canada's Olympic hockey team is being hit by enemy action in the form of the timely media attacks on hockey legend Wayne Gretzky who is set to leave for Italy next week to fulfill his role as Hockey Canada's executive director.
It should be obvious to discerning minds capable of abstract thought that Gretzky is being character assassinated in the hopes that, by sucking his energy, it will indirectly affect Canada's hockey team.
This is an example of psychological warfare or black-ops propaganda brought into the living rooms of the world by corporate media, our 2006 version of 1984's Ministry of Truth (Lies). ~ Jackie Jura
"I've done nothing wrong" (no evidence Gretzky placed bets). TSN.ca, Feb 10, 2006
Gretzky heading to Olympics (says he's innocent and won't let investigation stop him). Mercury News, Feb 10, 2006
Many faces of Gretzky's wife (been called Jezebel and Yoko Ono). Ottawa Sun, Feb 10, 2006
Gretzky's wife at center of storm. AZCentral. com. Feb 9, 2006
Janet Jones posed nude for Playboy in 1987, a year before she wed Gretzky in July 1988. Gretzky shelled out more than $1 million for the wedding. Jones' gown alone cost $40,000. The following month the Edmonton Oilers traded Gretzky to the Los Angeles Kings. A lot of media in Canada accused Gretzky of going Hollywood, and pointed fingers at Jones.
*Skating scoring system protects cheating judges (their names are now anonymous). Houston Chronicle, Feb 12, 2006
France's cheating judge Marie-Reine Le Gougne said she voted for Russians Elena Berezhnaya and Anton Sikharulidze over Canadians Jamie Sale and David Pelletier four years ago at Salt Lake City Olympics in return for a Russian judge's vote in favor of the French ice dancing team...Sale and Pelletier endured the disappointment of losing the gold medal they thought they had won with their program to Lai's Love Story theme..."Corruption in skating has been there for 100 years, and it still will be there. We just won't know about it," Pelletier said. "A system that protects the judges kind of makes me laugh. It should be a system that protects the skaters. Right now we don't know what's happening behind the score that we see on the board, and that's kind of a scary thing." Added Sale: "There still is no credibility with the leadership of the ISU. The people who were part of the corruption are still around, and the people who tried to get rid of them are gone. The good people were let go or fired, and the message was: 'Don't tell on us.' "...
GULLIVER ON PROSTITUTE WRITERS
Canada beats Russia 5-0! (World Junior Hockey Champions) Nyet, nyet for Russia now (gold medal showdown with Canada after Russia wins over USA) Canadians take cheap shots at USA (shout 'USA sucks - Go Russia go'). Vancouver Sun, Jan 5, 2006, Go to 6.Superstates & 28.Reality Control & BOO FRIEND, CHEER ENEMY
I've done nothing wrong"
(no evidence Gretzky placed bets)
TSN.ca, Feb 10, 2006
According to The Associated Press Thursday, a person with knowledge of the investigation has told them that Wayne Gretzky was recorded on a wiretap talking to the alleged financier of a gambling ring, discussing how the hockey great's wife could avoid being connected. Gretzky, coach and part-owner of the Phoenix Coyotes, allegedly can be heard on wiretaps made within the past month talking about his wife with assistant coach Rick Tocchet, the person said, speaking on the condition of anonymity because the investigation was ongoing. According to published reports, unnamed law enforcement officials have indicated that Janet Jones, Gretzky’s wife was being investigated for allegedly placing bets. There is no evidence that Gretzky placed any bets, according to the person.
Gretzky made a brief statement after the Coyotes' 5-1 loss to Dallas Thursday. "I'm not going anywhere," Gretzky said. "I'm still going to coach the Phoenix Coyotes. I've done nothing wrong. "I'm going to Italy on Sunday. I'm going to be with Team Canada."
Jones released her own statement Thursday night. "At no time did I ever place a wager on my husband's behalf," the statement read. "Other than the occasional horse race, my husband does not bet on any sports." Elliot Mintz, the spokesperson for Jones, said in the statement that his client may be called as a witness before a grand jury. "Janet is merely one of a number of witnesses, and there is no allegation whatsoever that Janet has violated any law," the statement said. "Janet will continue to cooperate fully with the New Jersey authorities."
Authorities say from Dec. 29 through Feb. 5 - the day of the Super Bowl - bettors placed a total of $1.7 million in wagers with the ring run by a New Jersey state trooper, Tocchet and a South Jersey man. All face charges of promoting gambling, money laundering and conspiracy and are scheduled to be arraigned in Superior Court in Mount Holly on Feb. 21, the state Attorney General's office said Thursday. Investigators are looking into whether anyone involved in the five-year-old alleged betting ring, which authorities say had a connection to organized crime in Philadelphia and southern New Jersey, bet on NHL games. New Jersey state police Lieut. Gerald Lewis told the New York Daily News it's not illegal to place a bet, so anyone who made wagers with this ring will not be charged. It is only illegal to act as a broker or to profit from gambling. The police have not officially identified any of those said to have placed bets. All information on Janet Jones's alleged involvement in betting has come from anonymous sources. The Star-Ledger of Newark, citing unidentified law enforcement sources, first reported of a wiretap involving Gretzky in Thursday's newspapers. Earlier in the week, Gretzky denied any involvement in the ring.
Gretzky heading to Olympics
(says he's innocent and won't let investigation stop him)
Tim Panaccio, Mercury News, Feb 10, 2006
If Wayne Gretzky travels to the Winter Olympic Games this weekend as he has stated he will, then once again hockey's greatest player will be a star. And it won't be because of what he did on the ice. Gretzky, the executive director of Hockey Canada, is being investigated by New Jersey law enforcement officials after his voice was heard on wiretaps talking about a sports gambling operation allegedly run by his assistant, former Flyer Rick Tocchet. New Jersey law enforcement officials confirmed Thursday that Gretzky and Tocchet are part of a probe into what has been described as a nationwide, multimillion-dollar illegal bookmaking operation and are looking into whether the former hockey superstar and owner-coach of the Phoenix Coyotes placed any bets through his wife, Janet Jones.
Gretzky has already stated he's innocent and that he had no knowledge of Tocchet's involvement until this week. And he said that he's going to Turin. "I'm still going to coach the Phoenix Coyotes," Gretzky said in a statement late Thursday. "I've done nothing wrong. I'm going to Italy on Sunday. I'm going to be with Team Canada."
That was looked at as good news by those involved with Team Canada. "Wayne is our leader, we need him to lead," said Flyers coach Ken Hitchcock, who is an assistant coach under Pat Quinn. "He led us at Salt Lake City in '02 and he led us at the World Cup of Hockey. We want him in Italy."
Bob Nicholson, the president of Hockey Canada, met with reporters Friday after arriving late in Turin on Thursday night. "I had a great conversation with Wayne as I jumped on the plane to come to Turin. Wayne is excited and he's really excited about coming here to lead the men's team," Nicholson said during an impromptu news conference during the Canadian women's practice at the Esposizioni ice rink. "Wayne should be here. He has been the leader of this team since day one. We just want to make sure this team is prepared. . . . Those are some distractions, but our key is to make sure we continue to move forward. We've been through the Olympics before and we always know there's a lot of media attention. We're just going to make sure we keep our focus on preparing the players." Nicholson did not seem concerned that the media attention might turn on Gretzky and stay with him for a while. "Wayne has dealt with the media before. He has made it clear where he is in this situation and he has not been involved. There's no reason for Wayne not to be here. If Wayne didn't come that's not right. We want Wayne Gretzky to be here and the players will look after their situations and management will manage."
Team Canada is the defending Olympic champion in hockey. The pressure to repeat is enormous, especially in light of the fact the Canadians were blown out by the Czech Republic at last May's IIHF World Championships in Austria and the Czechs are in the hunt here for the gold medal.
So, does having Gretzky at the Games make it easier to coach Team Canada because the focus will shift to him and not the team? "Easier? I don't know," Hitchcock said. "But I know this. When we all get over there, the whole focus is on the competition. It sounds funny but we don't know what is going on in the world outside of the Olympics during the time we're there. Other than the hockey competition, we have no clue to anything else. We just play hockey."
Nicholson said during his conversations with Gretzky, at no time did the issue of Gretzky staying in Phoenix ever come up. Gretzky's choice to come has been hotly debated throughout Canada in newspapers and television. "He thought he should be here," Nicholson said. "I certainly want him here. Quietly, everyone looks up to him. Wayne Gretzky has been the leader for the last number of years. We won gold in Salt City, we won gold at the World Cup and we're looking to try to capture gold here again."
Nicholson said that Gretzky has been harried the past several days. "The few times I talked him he was certainly a little tired from what he went through, but he seemed to have pretty good energy and we just talked about the things that I'm going to get done over here," he said. "He's in the mold to make sure everything is ready." Another question is whether Gretzky's wife, who often accompanies him at international events, will be here. She is alleged to have placed significant bets through Tocchet. Nicholson said the issue of family members attending the Games wouldn't be finalized until the weekend.
~ an independent researcher monitoring local, national and international events ~
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