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Miguel Seggera, Spanish Paralympic Committee
"It's extremely embarrassing"
 real 14k

Thursday, 14 December, 2000, 18:23 GMT
Spain ordered to return golds
Spanish Intellectual Disability basketball team
Spain celebrate after their gold medal victory
Spain's Paralympic basketball team have been ordered to return their gold medals after nearly all of their players were found to have no disability.

The Spanish Paralympic Committee said the medals would be handed back after an inquiry found that 10 of the 12-strong squad suffered no handicap.

The scandal has already led to the resignation of Fernando Martin Vicente, vice-president of the committee and president of the Spanish Federation for Mentally Handicapped Sports.

Last month, Carlos Ribagorda, a member of the team, said he and nine colleagues were not subjected to any medical or psychological tests to check their eligibility.

Spain beat Russia 87-63 in the final of the intellectual disability tournament. There has been no confirmation of when the medals will be re-assigned.

The Sydney Games were Spain's most successful Paralympics.

The team won 107 medals and finished third in the medals table behind Australia and Great Britain.

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See also:

27 Oct 00 |  Paralympics
Parallel Games better than ever
27 Oct 00 |  Paralympics
Paralympics reaches new heights
28 Oct 00 |  Paralympics
Britain beats Olympic tally record
19 Oct 00 |  Paralympics
Paralympic medal table
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