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Police searching for fugitive in World Cup scalping scheme

Brazilian police are searching for a World Cup hospitality company director declared a fugitive by officers investigating a ticket scalping scheme. Police say Ray Whelan, an executive with the MATCH group, left Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana Palace on Thursday just before police arrived to re-arrest him.

Hospitality executive fled from police on Thursday

Security personnel are seen here standing guard outside the Copacabana Palace hotel, the official accommodation for FIFA executives, following the arrest of a director of Match Hospitality, a subsidary company of FIFA, over illegal cup tickets. Ray Whelan was later released and fled before being re-arrested. (Yasuyoshi Chiba/Getty Images)

Brazilian police are searching for a World Cup hospitality company director declared a fugitive by officers investigating a ticket scalping scheme.

Police say Ray Whelan, an executive with the MATCH group, left Rio de Janeiro's Copacabana Palace through a service entrance on Thursday about an hour before police arrived to re-arrest him.

Police accuse Whelan of being a main source of World Cup tickets that were sold to an Algerian national they say is the biggest scalper for the sport's marquee tournament.

The MATCH group has denied any wrongdoing by Whelan, and said he was willing to cooperate with any investigation.

Under Brazilian law, reselling tickets for sporting events above face value is illegal.

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