Suspended Giro d’Italia director, Michele Acquarone, has scheduled a press conference for Wednesday – to give his side of the story regarding the ongoing fraud investigation into more than $17 million in misappropriated funds.
After the World Championships in Florence, RCS Mediagroup suspended Acquarone with pay, along with media relations director, Matteo Pastore – after it turned over the case to an outside firm for further investigation.
Acquarone has continued to maintain his innocence since the investigation got underway in October.
"I’ve never had my hands on the money, the only money I’ve seen was represented in digits on our reports: X amount of income and X amount of costs," he told the media at the end of October.
"My goal was to make sure the accounts were in order and to make the best product possible, a long-lasting one."
"All I can tell you is that no one from RCS has contacted me or talked to me for two months", he told the media this morning.
“I’m going crazy and it’s nonsense but on Wednesday or Thursday of this week I will talk to the media and tell them everything that I know. I will say everything that I can.”
“I spent 14 years at RCS. If I could choose of course I would like to go back to RCS but now it’s very difficult because it’s been two months and no one has talked to me. I’m innocent, of course I am.”
If appointed, Bellino would be only the 6th director of the Giro in it’s 104-year-old history. Acquarone took over from Angelo Zomegnan during 2011.
Bellino comes from outside the cycling world and currently serves as the Italian Athletics Federation’s secretary general.
Riccardo Taranto was appointed as the new CEO of RCS Sport on October 4, following Acquarone’s suspension stating:
"It was a preventative decision. It’s not a disciplinary suspension but a preventative one. His suspension is about governance not about punishment.”
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