Sponsors drop Lochte after Rio scandal

By AFP, Washington

Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte lost four sponsorship deals Monday -- a major financial hit for the embattled gold medalist stemming from his spurious claim of being robbed at gunpoint in Rio, a story later discredited by Brazilian police.
Global swimwear brand Speedo and US fashion label Ralph Lauren topped the list of companies that ended their relationships with the 32-year-old Lochte, with the former noting his actions had not reflected the "values" it wished to promote.
Mattress company Airweave and Syneron Candela, the parent company for a laser hair removal system that Lochte promoted, quickly followed suit.
Lochte claimed he and three of his teammates -- all of them gold medal winners in Rio -- were mugged by robbers pretending to be police after a night out, but the story quickly unraveled as new witness testimony and surveillance video surfaced.
Police said the group had been detained over the vandalization of a gas station bathroom, apparently led by a drunken Lochte -- a major embarrassment for Team USA, an Olympic swimming powerhouse.