Rio de Janeiro – Brazilian authorities have ordered two US Olympic swimmers to stay in the country after questioning their claim they were robbed.
A judge ordered Ryan Lochte and James Feigen’s passports to be seized until they could give further evidence.
However, Lochte’s father says he is back in the US, and judicial sources suspect both swimmers are no longer in Brazil.
A US Olympic Committee (USOC) spokesman said police arrived at the Athletes’ Village on Wednesday, asking to speak to the swimmers and take their passports.
“The swim team moved out of the village after their competition ended, so we were not able to make the athletes available,” said USOC spokesman Patrick Sandusky.
He said he could not confirm the swimmers’ location for security reasons.
Lochte, one of swimming’s most decorated Olympians, said he, Feigen and two other team mates were robbed on Sunday as they travelled back to the Athletes’ Village after a party.
They said they were in a taxi in the early hours of the morning when armed men carrying police badges pulled them over.
Lochte told NBC’s Today show: “They pulled out their guns, they told the other swimmers to get down on the ground – they got down on the ground.
“I refused, I was like we didn’t do anything wrong, so I’m not getting down on the ground.
“And then the guy pulled out his gun, he cocked it, put it to my forehead and he said, ‘Get down’, and I put my hands up, I was like ‘whatever.’
“He took our money, he took my wallet – he left my cellphone, he left my credentials.”
But Judge Keyla Blanc said she was puzzled by video footage of the swimmers returning to the Athletes’ Village joking with one another.
“They arrived with their psychological and physical integrity unshaken,” she wrote.
Authorities also said the group did not call police, and officers only began investigating once they saw media reports.
Police sources say they have been unable to find the taxi driver or to verify details provided by the swimmers.
Lochte’s lawyer, Jeff Ostrow, has said there is no question the robbery happened.
Twelve-time Olympic medalist Lochte swam in two events at the Rio Games, winning gold in the 4x200m freestyle relay.