Australian Olympic staffer Tancred cleared of bullying

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SYDNEY (AP) Australian Olympic Committee media director Mike Tancred says an independent tribunal has cleared him of bullying claims.

The AOC issued a statement Friday saying the tribunal's investigation into four claims against Tancred found ''none of the complaints has been made out on an objective basis.''

Tancred, who stood down from Olympic duties on full pay when the allegations were made public, was reprimanded in June for telling former AOC chief executive Fiona de Jong during a phone call last year that he would ''bury'' her.

The findings on Tancred, an 18-year AOC veteran, came a week after the release of a report on the AOC's workplace culture, which criticized the organization after a survey of staff and stakeholders highlighted perceptions of favoritism, unfairness and open hostility between senior leaders.

Tancred told the Australian Associated Press on Friday that he hoped to soon return to work.

''I am relieved that the truth has finally come out,'' Tancred was quoted as saying. ''I have faced four complaints in 18 years and although I am not an angel, I'm very passionate about what I do. I'm not a bully.''

Telephone calls to the AOC from The Associated Press seeking further comment were not immediately returned.