General News

Heather Mills facing disciplinary action from Paralympic officials

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Dec 19, 2013 | 4:45am EST

Sir Paul McCartney's ex-wife Heather Mills has been accused of throwing a "tantrum" and yelling at a member of the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) after she was told her skiing equipment breached regulations. The former model, who lost a leg in a motorcycle accident, had hoped to compete in the upcoming 2014 Winter Paralympics in Sochi, Russia as part of the British skiing team, but she pulled out of qualifying heats this week (beg16Dec13) amid a dispute with the IPC over her ski boots. IPC bosses have now confirmed they plan to take action against Mills over allegations she "verbally abused" and "physically harassed" one of their officials, Sylvana Mestre, during a coaches' meeting at an Austrian hotel on Monday (16Dec13). The organisation's communications director Craig Spence says, "I can confirm that an incident took place following the team meeting involving Heather and Sylvana, which was witnessed by a number of people. Heather's aggressive behaviour and verbal abuse left Sylvana extremely shocked and upset. Para-athletes are role models and an inspiration to billions of people. This disgraceful outburst is not what we expect from any athletes in our competitions and will not be tolerated... There can be no excuse for such aggressive and intimidating behaviour towards such a highly respected and experienced official..." He adds to Britain's BBC Radio 5 Live, "We absolutely do not condone that. It is likely we will sanction the athlete and this will incur a fine of between 500-1,000 euros... We have rules in place, we are likely to sanction her for her tantrum." Mestre adds, "I was trying to explain to (Mills) that this is not the equipment we approved earlier in the year and then that was it, she exploded." A representative for Mills insists the former model tried to explain her frustrations to Mestre "patiently", adding, "Sylvana shouted at Heather, would not let (her coach) speak or explain, and stormed back to the boardroom raised table." Coach John Clark also claims the IPC has a "vendetta" against Mills and that Mestre "deliberately put barriers in the way" to keep her from success.

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